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Equine Science Education

Our dedicated faculty provide an exciting academic curriculum blending equine studies with a strong foundation in the biological sciences. Through individualized programs tailored to meet each student's needs, our graduates are well-prepared as equine researchers and successful members of the horse industry.

The equine emphasis in the Animal and Poultry Sciences curriculum was completely redesigned in 2006, and is designed to prepare students for success in veterinary or other professional schools, for employment in top-level jobs within the equine industry, or as skilled horse owners.Also available in the equine emphasis are various independent studies, undergraduate research projects and special studies. These classes are designed to help students meet their specific needs and goals, and allows them to further explore a area of interest to them.

Blacksburg Course Offerings:

Six Levels of Equitation: From beginner to advanced levels, we offer instruction in hunter seat and dressage fundamentals and techniques.

Introduction to the Equine Industry provides an overview of the horse industry as well as basic information on anatomy, physiology, nutrition, genetics, husbandry and diseases of horses.

Horse Management Laboratory allows students to master many of the basic hands-on skills needed to work as a professional in the veterinary field or in the general equine industry.

Equine Conformation and Biomechanics teaches students to effectively evaluate horses with respect to breed standards, soundness and suitability for a given discipline. Special focus is placed on modern scientific research in this area, European methods for evaluating sporthorses, and students in this course also help organize our annual ISR/Oldenburg NA Mare and Foal inspection, held on campus each September.

Advanced Equine Evaluation is for those students who are interested in learning more about judging specialized classes, or who are interested in competing on Virginia Tech's competitive Horse Judging Team.

Equine Behavior and Training allows students to participate in training of horses while studying the science of behavior. Students are also responsible for preparing and presenting horses in the annual ISR/Oldenburg NA Mare and Foal Inspection in September and the annual Hokie Harvest Sale in October.

Horse Production and Management is a senior-level course which further prepares our students for their careers with horses. This class combines economic and market considerations with the basic skills covered in Introduction to the Equine Industry and the Horse Management Laboratory courses, and the training students received in Animal Anatomy, Animal Breeding and Genetics, Animal Nutrition and Reproductive Physiology to "put it all together." A special feature of this class is the Mare and Foal project, in which groups of students are responsible for following a mare through her late pregnancy and working with her newborn foal.

 

Other Opportuntities for Equine Science Students Include:

  • The Equine Studies Program at the Middleburg Agricultural Research & Extension Center
  • Summer Equine Science Program in Germany
  • Summer Internship at Campbell Arena
  • Summer Sporthorse Internship