Is your school a wine or a beverage? The difference might be more than you think.
The question finds its genesis in remarks made by an acquaintance of mine who is co-owner of a popular wine shop in the greater Philadelphia area. A number of folks who try to get to know him find him somewhat abrasive at times, yet he acts that way because he's trying to underscore something important.
That point, according to him, is that many "branded" wines (think: Yellow Tail, Hardy's, Woodbridge, etc.) are beverages, and not wine. Beverages are meant to have the same taste, the same flavor profile, year after year. Viewed in that vein, vintage has no meaning: the companies are trying to produce a wine whose flavor profile never alters. On the one hand, consistency is something on which customers can rely, meaning that there are never any surprises. To maintain this consistency, however, the companies must result frequently to methods that add or subtract certain elements inherent in making wine -- for example, they might bathe the wines in oak chips or they might "extract" some water from the juice during an overly-wet year. On the other hand, this same consistency means that consumers never get to taste the differences in wines from vintage to vintage, meaning that they will fail to appreciate the inherent "naturality" of wine.
A wine, as opposed to a "beverage", is a drink that tastes different from vintage to vintage, as it reflects the effects of nature in any given year. Just as people are different at different times of the year and in different social situations, so too are wines. Good wine, my acquaintance would say, cannot be made by a massive corporation; only an honest grower can produce grapes of the best quality, and can tell you about variations in soil, exposure, gradient, ambient temperatures, and the like. That grower can craft the story about the wine, giving it personality and soul. As such, folks who drink wine (and not beverages...) appreciate the uniqueness of any given wine; they appreciate the soul, and they're looking for growers who can make such expressions of a grape into meaningful wine.
So, is your school a wine or a beverage?