COLLEGE STATION – More than 100 former Texas A&M University Summer Horsemanship School instructors gathered as part of a reunion weekend to celebrate 46 consecutive years of the program at Texas A&M University.
The event was held on the university campus and included guests of honor B.F. Yeates, Dr. Pete Gibbs and Dr. Gary Potter, all former founders/directors of the program that began in the 1970s.
“This was the first-ever instructor reunion for the Summer Horsemanship School Program and a wonderful opportunity to reconnect 46 years of instructors,” said Chelsie Huseman, Texas A&M
AgriLife Extension Service horse program specialist in College Station. “Our goal was to bring back those who have been a part of this storied program for several decades and bring together new and old to celebrate this important educational program, which continues to contribute greatly to the equine industry in Texas.”
The weekend included tailgating and a Texas A&M baseball game. Attendees also toured the Thomas G. Hildebrand, DVM ’56 Equine Complex and attended a Kentucky Derby Run for the Roses banquet. The banquet program included a welcome by Dr. Parr Rosson, AgriLife Extension interim director, as well as historical perspectives on the horsemanship schools by Yeates and Potter, along with an overview of the current Summer Horsemanship School Program by Huseman and Gibbs.
Huseman also announced the start of a new program, Texas A&M International Horsemanship, which offers Summer Horsemanship School student instructors the opportunity to teach horsemanship internationally. The program’s first trip was to Beijing in March. Zach Haydon, ag systems management major, was the first Summer Horsemanship School instructor to participate in this new initiative.
The weekend activities also included celebrating and honoring the retirement of Dr. Martha Vogelsang, longtime equine faculty member in the department of animal science.
Now entering its 46th year of offering Summer Horsemanship Schools in Texas, the series offers both fun and educational opportunities to strengthen the foundation of horsemanship and develop advanced riding skills in youth and adults alike. Summer Horsemanship Schools can be hosted by any group in the state of Texas, including county programs, 4-H clubs, and horse associations. The schools are designed to deliver relevant and helpful information to all levels and ages of horseman. Participants gain valuable riding and horse management knowledge, Huseman said.
For more information about hosting a Summer Horsemanship School or about becoming a student instructor for the program, visit https://animalscience.tamu.edu/livestock-species/equine/summer-horsemanship/.