Field of Study

The depth and reach of the U.S. equine industry is far greater than many people realize. There are 7.2 million horses in the United States and the industry contributes $122 billion to the gross domestic product. Over 1.3 million people own horses, and an additional 38 million people who don’t own horses identify as a horse enthusiast. Careers in the U.S. horse industry support the equivalent of approximately 454,000 full-time jobs working directly with horses and 988,000 indirect jobs that provide support to the equine industry.

THE PROGRAM

The Equine Science program provides a well-rounded, science-based education encompassing both classroom and experiential learning opportunities. For individuals interested in pursuing their education beyond a Bachelor of Science degree, the Equine Science curriculum can be tailored to meet the requirements for veterinary schools and graduate programs.

THE CURRICULUM

The Equine Science major is designed to provide a strong overall background with supporting course work in the sciences, humanities and general education. Classes include anatomy, physiology, nutrition, health, production management, horsemanship and equitation. Hands-on learning opportunities are a priority with 70% of the equine courses providing students this type of experience. The curriculum requires students to complete an internship, study abroad or research experience. These unique opportunities allow students to put what they learn into practice, and offers the chance to gain valuable experiential education in the horse industry.

An Equine Science minor through North Dakota State University allows students to explore several equine-related courses and gain general horse industry knowledge. Students can also receive a minor in Equine Assisted Activities & Therapies which focuses on coursework in equine science, human development, and psychology. Both minors pair well with essentially any major offered at NDSU.

THE FACULTY

The Equine Science Program has outstanding faculty members with diverse backgrounds in the equine industry who are ready to help students learn and thrive at NDSU. Our faculty have taught internationally, earned multiple teaching and advising awards, and maintain active research programs.

Equine Science faculty expertise is complemented by other faculty within the Department of Animal Sciences and across the university. The overall quality of the faculty at North Dakota State University has been recognized through numerous awards for teaching and research excellence.

CAREER OPPORTUNITIES

Our graduates find exciting careers in diverse areas including sales representatives for nutrition, pharmaceutical and equipment products; marketing specialists; barn and facility managers; equine event and show managers; working with breed and industry associations; equine reproduction; horse training and sales preparation; and riding instructors. In addition to career opportunities following graduation, many students have chosen to continue their education in veterinary schools or graduate programs.

EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

The NDSU Horsemen’s Association supports a variety of equine-related activities. The club supports the Intercollegiate Horse Show teams, sponsors a western IHSA show, and conducts several youth camps.

The NDSU Rodeo Club provides students the opportunity to gain experience and knowledge of the sport of rodeo. The club supports the Intercollegiate Rodeo Team and also sponsors the Bison Stampede Rodeo each fall.

FINANCIAL AID AND SCHOLARSHIPS

Part-time work and work-study programs are available at the equine center, in several different livestock units, and in animal science laboratories within the department. Over $50,000 in departmental scholarships are awarded to Equine Science, Animal Science and Veterinary Technology students annually. In addition, the College of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Natural Resources awards scholarships each year to incoming freshman and current NDSU students. Contact the Office of the Dean, College of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Natural Resources, for more information on college scholarships https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/academics/scholarships

Student loan, grant and work-study information is available from the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships, and One Stop https://www.ndsu.edu/onestop/finaid/