Meet Lindsay Koogler, Ferrum College’s first-ever student in the new equine science program. A sophomore from Chesterfield, VA, Koogler knew she wanted a career that would not force her to be indoors all day. After volunteering at Healing Strides of Virginia in Boones Mill, the non-profit therapeutic riding center that hosts the Ferrum College Equestrian Team and Club, Koogler realized how much she enjoyed interacting with riders. “[Seeing] the smiles on their faces made me realize that I want to do that every day,” explained Koogler. “When I learned of the new equine studies program [at Ferrum College], I knew it was a perfect fit for me because horses are my ‘happy place.’”
After graduation, Koogler wants to continue her work with equine assisted physical and rehabilitate therapy by focusing on hippotherapy. She also plans to pursue stable management based on her experience at Healing Strides “…because of how well it is run, from lesson schedules to care for the horses.”
Although Ferrum College previously offered equine science as a minor, Koogler is the first student to begin an agricultural science degree with an emphasis in equine studies. According to Assistant Professor of Animal Science and Agricultural Sciences Nancy Brubaker, DVM, this degree is designed to give the student the foundation to pursue a career in the equine industry with an emphasis on business success. The discipline focus is the student’s choice. “The equine industry is dynamic and this degree will provide the basics of equine science, management, and business,” said Dr. Brubaker. “It will have a slate of equine-only course, but will also be integrated into the animal science, agri-business, agronomy, and horticulture courses as well to provide a solid foundation of expertise for the equine studies student.”
To learn more about the equine studies program at Ferrum College, please visit https://www.ferrum.edu/naturalsciencesandmath/agriculture/#1521838066578-64b3263f-7e37.