Emma Bentley
Emma Bentley
Old Bedalian 2005

Have you undertaken any kind of further study since leaving Bedales and have you gained any further qualifications?

In 2010 I graduated from St Andrews University with an MA (Hons) in Latin and Russian and I then completed a “Masters in European Business” from ESCP Europe (on the London-Paris track) a year later.

What kind of work are you currently involved in, and how and why have you come to be doing it?

I was very involved with the student clubs and societies at St Andrews, and one of my tasks was to organise a wine tasting. That got the ball rolling. While based in London, I took evening classes in viticulture and wine tasting. Then, upon finishing my studies, my first job was an internship in a prestigious wine merchants based in Paris. Shortly afterwards, I got moved across into their wine importing branch. It all went from there.

I'm now working for a premium wine and spirits importer and distributor in France. I'm responsible for negotiating marketing budgets with suppliers and putting in place the strategy for developing my categories of foreign wine, gin, vodka, tequila, mezcal, saké nihonshu and shochu, to name but a few.

Bedales instilled me with a deeply rooted self-confidence


Did attending Bedales help you in getting to where you are now and how satisfied are you with what you are doing?

Definitely. Bedales instilled in me a deeply rooted self-confidence that has allowed me to move abroad and establish myself in a line of work that I really enjoy.

Even just last Sunday afternoon, whilst I was making a khachapuri (a type of cheese bread hailing from Georgia) I thought back to all those Thursday mornings spent in the Bakehouse, of starting the yeast, pounding the dough, mixing in the chocolate… I also wondered how on earth I was able to get my teenage self out of bed at 6am every week!

Have you been involved in any other interesting activities or occupations since leaving school?

Running in parallel to my professional life, I write a blog about the restaurant, cocktail bar and wine scene in Paris. This has developed into me giving cookery classes and hosting supper clubs and wine tasting events.