2-Year & 4-Year Horse Management Program

Academic Programs

Two-Year Horse Management Program: The Horse Management program is a four semester curriculum that emphasizes both hands-on learning and the understanding of pertinent theory. Students come with a wide variety of goals, from wanting to become trainers and riding instructors to wanting to be show grooms and exercise riders; from students wanting to own their own boarding facilities to ones that want to be employed at breeding farms. The program emphasizes mandatory internships and tailors elective classes to each student’s goals. This program has a limited annual enrollment.

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Bachelors of Science: Within the Animal Science major, students can emphasize Science, Agri-Business Management or Pre-Veterinary Medicine. Students have the opportunity to specialize in horses through course work, directed studies and undergraduate research projects. A semester exchange with the Enniskillen College of Agriculture Horse Program provides additional opportunities for those students with an interest in the international horse industry.

2-Year Horse Management Program

The U.S. horse industry offers exciting opportunities to students with an enthusiasm for horses and the necessary training in business management and production. That training is exactly what the 16-month Horse Management Program at Michigan State University offers you. While you earn your certificate in Horse Management, you’ll spend three semesters (15-week periods) on the MSU campus and one semester off campus, getting hands-on experience in a professional setting. The Horse Management Program is one of 9 options offered by the Institute of Agriculture Technology.


What will I study?
On campus, you’ll learn valuable skills and theory from the faculty of Michigan’s land grant university, in teaching facilities that are the best in the state. You’ll sharpen your skills in horse production by taking courses in farm management, nutrition, horse judging, breeding, behavior and training, exercise physiology, and health care. You’ll spend time at the Horse Teaching and Research Facility, working with Michigan State’s herd of Arabian horses. Beyond that, you’ll take courses in business management, economics, farm law and computers that will sharpen your business savvy and put you in a position to get the job you want in the horse industry.

You’ll have the opportunity to pursue your professional interests off campus, too, through a work experience designed just for you. Whether your interests lie in breeding, racing, training, or other areas of horse management, we"ll help you locate this work experience in or outside of Michigan. You’ll work closely with professionals in the horse industry and gain the hands-on experience you need to round out your classroom studies.

What kinds of jobs can I get?
Our graduates deal with the day-to-day care and management of horses and horse facilities. Some are farm or stable managers, and others are division managers for large horse operations. Some become trainers or tack shop owners, and others go on to explore other areas of the horse industry in which they have special interests and skills.

What kind of preparation do I need?
Our most successful students enjoy horses and want careers where they can be in contact with horses. They come into the program with a good high school science background, have some experience working with horses and, ideally, have already worked at a horse farm and understand the commitment involved.

Admission to the Horse Management Program at Michigan State University requires that you have a high school diploma.

4-Year - B.S. Degree in Animal Science with Equine Emphasis

The Department of Animal Science at Michigan State University has ongoing equine programs in teaching, research, and extension. The baccalaureate program offers a course of study culminating in a bachelor’s degree in Animal Science, with an equine emphasis.

The baccalaureate program in Animal Science at Michigan State University offers an exciting and innovative Equine option. The goals of the Animal Science program is to prepare students for management level positions.The B.S. also provides students with the background necessary to work in fields such as sales and marketing, and with industry associations. Students take courses on campus for four years, and professional internships are strongly encouraged. Courses in the Animal Science program emphasize nutrition, physiology (exercise and reproductive), marketing and management. Students also take courses in equine behavior, horsemanship, and training.


For more information on Animal Science-Equine Emphasis programs contact:

Dr. Karen Waite
Department of Animal Science
474 S. Shaw Lane, Rm. 1250A
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824-1225
(517) 432-0383 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)