PSC equine

Darian Bender, who graduated this spring with an AAS degree in Animal Science, brushes one of Potomac State’s Quarter Horses. She is enrolled in the SAGE four-year degree program starting this fall. 

KEYSER — Potomac State College has enhanced its Equine Management major to be offered Fall 2020 through the Sustainable Agriculture Entrepreneurship 2-year Associate of Applied Science degree. 

Students will then have the option to pursue the SAGE 4-year degree program.

“Because of new trends in the equine industry, we reinvented our major so that our equine-focused students can pursue more entrepreneurial endeavors and small business enterprises,” said Corey Armstrong, Director of SAGE and Farm Operations at the College. “More than ever, students are interested in starting popular income-earning businesses like therapeutic, wellness and general riding instruction; personal training; farrier services and education; stable management; equine chiropractor; event planning; and equine photography.” 

Armstrong went on to explain that the broad equine industry supports many niche opportunities for graduates from this major and building a strong foundation in entrepreneurship and business knowledge is essential in this field. Under SAGE, equine-focused students will learn equine arena and stable management, proper nutrition and animal husbandry, pasture management and rotational grazing, cost management practices for maintaining a stable, and profit maximization through unique events and community outreach. 

College facilities include an indoor riding arena totaling 27,500 square feet with adjacent pastures for the College’s American Quarter Horse herd originally donated by the late Bob and Jewell Evans, of the renowned Bob Evans Restaurants and food products. Students also have the option to board their own horses while attending the College. 

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of animal care and service workers is projected to grow 16 percent from 2018 to 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations.

SAGE and equine courses are taught by actual agri-business owners and instructors that have real-world business experience. Students can join this exciting, hands-on program, and join other SAGE graduates that are ready to make an immediate impact in the ever-growing agricultural industry.

For more information, call 304-788-6820. o

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