As the first signs of winter settle across the Bluegrass, the season for reflection, hot chocolate, and horsey themed holiday cards is most certainly upon us and the Equine Scholars Program had a Fall 2013 semester worthy of reflection. Enjoy the below account of our semester (feel invited to indulge in some hot chocolate while reading).
During Pegasus Camp 2013, we welcomed 7 first year Equine Scholars and 2 new established students to the program. With Equine Scholars attending from across the country, the group remains one of proud diverse equine interests and dynamic skills. You can learn more about their backgrounds and interests by viewing our current students.
The semester began with a tour of Play Mor Farm, a top of the line breeding and training center for Morgan horses. While viewing the impressive Lexington based facility, Jennifer Hazen explained the AI process and presented Mizrahi, one of the most successful show athletes and breeding horses in the Morgan horse industry.
With the semester underway, we excitedly welcomed back to campus Ann Cothran, the STABLES Instructor at Central Kentucky Riding for Hope. Ann is a 2010 graduate of Georgetown College and the Equine Scholars Program. She shared with the group the evolution of her position with CKRH, an organizations that assists students and patients with both physical and mental disabilities through equine assisted therapy and equine assisted activities.
A documentary premiere we were particularly excited about this Fall was, “Penny & Red: The Life of Secretariat’s Owner”, held at the historic and beautiful Fasig Tipton Sales Pavilion. Through kind generosity extended by The Secretariat Foundation, our students were able to attend the premiere and enjoy a unique, one-of-a-kind evening centered on one of thoroughbred horse racings’ greatest ladies, Penny Chenery.
True to our barn roots, a group of students made the committed 6:30a.m. venture to H.E. “Tex” Sutton Forwarding Company to observe first class, bar none air travel for our four hooved friends. Equine Scholars observed loading practices as a plane of 19 head prepared to ship out. We even enjoyed the view as they hit the run way.
Veronica Feth, Pharmacy Manager and Laboratory Assistant for Equine Medical Associates, P.S.C., shared with us the unique way she balances her career in the horse industry with career as an artist. Veronica expounded upon her experience with Equine Medical Associates, P.S.C., a large and prestigious equine veterinary practice in Central Kentucky, while sharing several pieces of art work and explaining artistic technique.
In October we toured The Red Mile, hosted in partnership by The Kentucky Horse Council and the Harness Horse Youth Foundation. Ellen Taylor, the Executive Director of the Harness Horse Youth Foundation, educated us on topics ranging from track history to harness and cart nuances.
Another phenomenal tour from this most recent semester included Maplecrest Farm, an exemplary dressage facility owned and operated by long time ESP supporter Reese Koffler-Stanfield. Reese, a savvy business entrepreneur and respected industry pillar, shared with the Equine Scholars the day-to-day fiscal facts and horse care responsibilities related to owning and running a boarding facility and training service.
Joe Martinolich, a partner architect and Director of Equine Facilities Design with CMW, Inc., visited campus and shared various equine facility projects while discussing the integral workings of professional success. He got all of us thinking when he pointed out that every detail in any structure or building is an intentional decision made by someone at some point in the design process!
For the first time this year, we hosted on campus a student lead initiative we lovingly call Equine Week. The inaugural Equine Week was designed to involve all members of campus in some of the many exciting activities we appreciate and regularly enjoy as Equine Scholars. From handing out fast fun facts complete with candy (because not everyone realizes that you can buy fried cookies at the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event while watching horses jump massive squirrel shaped fences) to Pet A Horse Day, it was wonderful to see peers, faculty, and staff experiencing horse culture, some for the first time ever. Equine Week even included an Equine Scholar and ESP alumna produced riding demonstration, which showcased upper levels of dressage and jumping.
As Equine Scholars located in the heart of horse country, we have prime seating to many blissfully wonderful events, including the 3rd Annual Alltech National Horse Show held at the Kentucky Horse Park. To start the week off right, we toured the show site to truly grasp what is required to manage a successful event that involved the entire Lexington and Georgetown community. Throughout the week students volunteered to work at the show, having a first class view to the best horses and riders in the international hunter/jumper ring, while further developing professional skills.
To kick off November, we took a walk on the equine veterinary medicine side, visiting first with Dr. Deborah Williams at the University of Kentucky Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory to learn about the imperative services offered through the facility, from select titers to necropsy.
Later that week, we visited Lexington Equine Surgery and Sports Medicine, a premiere medical facility offering surgical and ambulatory services. Lauren Morici, the site Surgery Director and Surgery Technician, walked our group through typical procedure protocol and reviewed the intricate preparation and recovery techniques required to make each surgical endeavor a paramount success.
Next, we welcomed to campus Natalie Voss, a freelance writer and Weekend Editor for the Paulick Report. Natalie reviewed her career history, providing a glimpse of what it takes to achieve a position within your desired field. Equine Scholars greatly enjoyed the opportunity to interact with Natalie, asking questions pertaining to everything from how to effectively navigate in current job markets to resume tips.
We were excited to welcome back to campus yet another proud Georgetown College alumi, Lee Carter. Lee is the Executive Director of Equestrian Events, Inc., the management entity behind the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event. Lee reviewed his established professional history and discussed the continued development of a treasured Kentucky tradition (for horse people who may have never attended, the event truly is Christmas in April), the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event. He even challenged present Equine Scholars to discuss prospective attendant improvements, leading discussions related to marketing and attendant experience.
Our semester ended on a high note at the first ever Sporting Art Auction held at the Keeneland Sales Pavilion, a joint venture between Keeneland and Cross Gate Galleries. The pieces offered for sale were akin to work displayed in the finest museums and the atmosphere was enhanced by the crowd and live, horse sales style bidding.
As we settle down for snowy rides and a long winter nap or two, we are also preparing for an exciting Spring 2014. It is a great time to be an Equine Scholar at Georgetown College. We wish all of our friends, those with two legs as well as those with four, the best this holiday season!