The spring semester is now in full swing. Well, mostly full swing. Considering winter storm Jonas pushed back the journey to school for a few days. I digress.
I already know that this semester will be an exciting one, for several reasons.
·As the dressage team, we are hosting an IDA Dressage show at our Equestrian Center
·I am travelling with my school’s Eventing team to Lexington, Kentucky in the spring for the Rolex Kentucky 3-Day Event
·I am taking an Equine Facility Management course
·My school has just opened its brand new library (book-worm excitement level 1000 reached)
·I am competing in my very first powerlifting meet
I will delve into further detail about our IDA Dressage show and what hosting it entails in a later post, as it is not being held until the end of the month. What I would like to give you a look into today is my Equine Facility Management class and others like it, and how “future plans” sometimes sound to college students.
This class is taught by a professor and riding instructor with a great deal of experience in teaching, training, riding, AND managing equine facilities. I cannot think of qualities that make someone more of a valuable resource of practical knowledge when dealing with horses.
Walking into class the first day, the instructor asked us if we could think of anything in the area of facility management that we had a burning desire to know. Things that will be important and useful for us to know if we plan on entering the horse industry (most of us are). Almost all of the items brought up by the class overlapped with what the instructor planned on teaching.
Classes such as this providing practical knowledge and even hands on experience have made my college education more enriching than I expected. In a previously completed class, Equine Health Management taught by our own barn manager, we were able to practice how to perform basic soundness checks and recognize health issues, use all types of bandages properly, give intramuscular injections, oral injections, and understand some basics of equine medicine. All things that would need to be basic knowledge if we wish to manage any kind of equine facility in the future.
The future. This brings me to an important point of this post. How many other college students (or graduates) were asked by family or friends over the holidays what short-term or long-term plans you have? Are you doing any more internships? Will you have a job after you graduate? Are you moving anywhere? Where do you want to be in five years?
*continues casually picking up and eating 25 cookies sitting on the table during the holiday party*
I know that to many people these are harmless questions, but for those of us hovering between still feeling like wary children and trying to step out into the world as “adults”, they can sometimes cause panicked thoughts to creep in. Why do I still not know what I want to do? This person has already secured a job after graduation. This person is already living independently. I need to get my life together.
This is a reminder to my fellow students to breathe. Take each day in stride (I chuckle), and try not to let the uncertainty of the future overwhelm you. This is something I must remind myself constantly. Be proactive in networking, and learn about what you enjoy. Absorb as much information as you can from your experienced instructors. You will be far more motivated to take the reins (So many horse puns, Emma) in your education and life in general when you are having fun with it.
Exhibit A: Equine Management classes.
Until next time!