In Honor of All the Queen's Horses: Top US Equestrian Colleges

In Honor of All the Queen's Horses: Top US Equestrian Colleges

Melissa W.

Queen Elizabeth II will be laid to rest today after over 70 years on the throne. It's no secret that she had a deep love of horses and it's been reported that she owned over 100 of them in her lifetime! Her first horse was a Shetland pony given to her when she was just 4 years old and she continued to regularly ride up until she was 95, only stopping because of doctor's orders due to her mobility issues. While she received private lessons in the UK growing up, there are several colleges and universities in the US with an equine science option. That's right; a degree in horses, and it's more than just riding.


Auburn University: Auburn, AL

Looking to jump into a career in equine science? If so, Auburn University is for you! As part of their College of Agriculture, this award-winning program offers courses in equine behavior and training, equine nutrition, and physiology of an equine athlete, to name a few. Make your equine education well-rounded with directed electives in breeding and marketing! Auburn is nationally-recognized as “leaders in equine teaching, research, extension and horse performance activities” with an onsite equestrian center with over 35 stalls. Auburn is home to a 6-time national champion equestrian team.

From the school: “The equine science option will enable you to focus on science and on practical skills required for a successful career in the horse industry. Through the choice of appropriate elective courses, this Animal Sciences major track option can also prepare you to apply to Auburn’s College of Veterinary Medicine.”

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Berry College: Mount Berry, GA

A leader in the field, Berry College offers students with hands-on experience in animal science. State-of-the-art facilities and small class sizes are just two of the perks! Courses include genetics, reproductive, behavior, and veterinary microbiology, to name a few. Students will leave Berry College with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Animal Science with an option to further education with a post-graduate concentration in veterinary medicine. Berry College offers students a unique opportunity for immediate access to its animals on campus, including horses.

From the school: “From preventative medicine to animal husbandry, you’ll research alongside your professors. Whether managing livestock or working in a local veterinary clinic, you’ll get (paid) professional experience while deepening your work ethic and preparing for graduate school. Berry’s campus creates access to a wide variety of ecosystems and is home to a vast working farm with livestock and an equine center.”

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Alfred University: Alfred, NY

If you’re looking to master riding styles, Alfred University is the college for you! A division of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, the Equestrian Studies program runs a state-of-the-art equine park where students can learn the ins and outs of English and Western riding. Dressage, and draft horse driving. Students are also given the opportunity to ride competitively on varsity and junior varsity intercollegiate teams. The Equestrian Studies program is a minor, allowing students to mix and match their courses to get a well-rounded education, opening doors to careers in animal sciences post-graduation.

From the school: “The Alfred University Equestrian Studies program is designed to offer students an opportunity to define their own needs and goals and create a career plan that facilitates their achievement. Alfred University offers the opportunity for you to combine an Equestrian minor with one of our existing majors to prepare you for a wide variety of careers.”

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Earlham College: Richmond, IN

Home to the only student-run barn and collegiate horse program in the United States, Earlham College offers a unique educational experience unmatched by other colleges in equine studies. Through the on-campus equestrian center, students have the opportunity to be part of The Barn Cooperative, a place for hands-on experience in barn management, athletic horse riding, competition, and wellness. The mentorship students receive is one of the program’s biggest assets. Earlham College offers an Equestrian Management minor which spans from basic horse care/safety, to teaching methods to be used post-course completion. 

From the school: “​​Earlham’s equestrian management minor provides a pathway for experienced and non-experienced students who want to channel their love of horses into a lifelong hobby or career and has shaped impressive leaders and capable horse people for generations. This program also offers an opportunity for a lifetime of engagement through the Friends of Earlham College Stables (FOECS), of which many members own horses and run barns. These alumni support the Barn, visit biannually and collaborate with Barn staff on major decisions, bringing invaluable mentorship to the program.”

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Cazenovia College: Cazenovia, NY

As part of the Division of Business and Management/Bachelor of Professional Studies degree, Cazenovia College offers an unmatched Equine Business Management program. Combining equine business, equine science, and traditional business management courses, Cazenovia prepares students for future equine careers in both support and hands-on areas of the industry. Students in the program graduate with a Bachelor of Professional Studies degree in Management with a concentration in Equine Business Management. As an added bonus, students will be learning on a 240 acre equestrian center among a nationally-ranked intercollegiate equestrian team!

From the school: “The Equine Business Management program of the Bachelor of Professional Studies degree in Management is designed for students interested in the organizational, managerial, and commercial aspects of the equine industry, as well as students interested in advanced performance horse care, equine reproduction, instruction and stable management.”

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Potential careers for equine grads include professional athletic coaching, equine therapy, event management, veterinarian health, breeding, etc. 

As an honorary commissioner of The Mounties, (The Royal Canadian Mounted Police), the Queen's funeral will feature several horses. "Four Canadian horses will lead a total of 199 military equines in Monday’s funeral: 102 in the central London procession from Westminster Hall to Wellington Arch, and another 97 in a caravan to St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle, where the queen will be laid to rest. 'The horses are an unequivocally important part of that,' said Capt. Catherine Russell, the fleet’s ceremonial coordinator. "'We want to make her proud.'"


Photo by Mark de Jong on Unsplash

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