The Roads We Follow
It’s that time of year again, tens of thousands of fresh faced college graduates are seeking employment. The race is on to seal the deal, for post-grad life of employment. The horse industry is actually exploding with unexplored employment opportunities that I think more colleges could educate students about. Who knows maybe I didn’t take the right courses, or read the right memos to learn about some of these opportunities. However, I think that students looking to seek employment in the horse world should spend some time exploring options outside of the barn.
For me, I thought my career in the horse world, would end when I decided that training horses full-time was not for me. A big drawback to training horses is that I like to travel, and play just as hard as I work. And for most horse trainers, they do not get those luxuries, they are married to their career which is a beautiful thing but not necessarily for me.
The view from my office as an assistant horse trainer.
I work at various tradeshows across the country, helping vendors in their booths. I’ve had the fantastic opportunity to work in booths for Kimes Ranch and Scottsdale Western World. I am a shining example of having a job where I spend long days at the horse shows, meeting up with old friends, meeting new friends, and staying in constant awe of these equine athletes that I once thought I would spend my life training. Sure, I have my horses at home that I show occasionally and get to enjoy, but for all intents and purposes, I get to enjoy the horse shows with MUCH less stress than I did as an assistant trainer.
The view from my office working in booths at tradeshows.
Being a vendor at a tradeshow is not for everyone either. Some other avenues to look into in the horse industry are: look into marketing for magazines or online publications, blogging (hey I always have had a lot to say, and now I get to have a lot to say about things I am passionate about). Graphic design for trainers/website design, marketing sale horses, horse show staff, breeding farm staff, working for feed companies, working for retailers, the list truly seems endless.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I truly loved training horses, and encourage those who want to make that dream a reality, to do so. But I also want to stress that it doesn’t have to be for everyone, there are other options out there! Keep your eyes open and network, network, network.
Keep dreamin’ kids, the sky is truly the limit!