Programs at SUU

Equine Studies Associate Degree Program

Prepare for a career working with horses

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Southern Utah University’s Equine Studies associate degree program gives students hands-on experience working with horses. During the accredited, two-year program, you’ll cover everything from riding and training horses to horse husbandry including studies in the areas of agricultural business, vaccinations, horse production, horse science and industry, animal/livestock breeding, pest management, and range lands. The SUU Equine Studies program is the only equine-dedicated degree offered within Utah or Nevada and it is the only opportunity students have to become degree certified to work with horses.

You do not need to be an experienced equestrian to enter the Equine Studies program. In fact, the program includes three levels of classes: beginner, intermediate, and advanced. The university has its own horses and tack, which you can use, or you can bring your own horse and tack if you want.

All students must complete five credits of internship experience working with horses before they can graduate from the Equine Studies program. There are many opportunities for equine-related internships in the Cedar City, Utah, region. They include working with veterinarians, assisting trail riding groups, working alongside horse farriers, assisting at the Dust Devil horse rescue, working on ranches, as well as helping outfit riders at local tack stores.

In addition to their excellent academic credentials, the faculty members who teach in the Equine Studies program are all well experienced in working with horses. Students who like the idea of a future working in some capacity with horses, should check out the opportunities opened up by earning an Associate of Applied Science degree in Equine Studies.

Why Choose SUU for Equine Studies?

  • Equine Studies students take part in SUU’s active Agriculture Club, which plays a significant service role in the local Cedar City community.
  • Classes are small in the Equine Studies program to allow extensive interaction with instructors. Riding classes are limited to just 13 students each to ensure students receive the individual instruction needed to develop excellent skills.
  • This Southern Utah University program is the only equine-dedicated degree program in Utah or Nevada.

Career and Salary Potential for Equine Studies Graduates

There are a variety of career paths a graduate of the Equine Studies program can follow. The chart below shows what the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates for a few of the many different jobs available in the field.

Position Median average annual salary Anticipated growth through 2022
Range scientist $59,060 3 percent
Horse breeder $18,910 -3 percent
Horse trainer $19,970 15 percent
Ranch hand $18,910 -3 percent
Animal husbandry manager $69,300 -19 percent
Horse nutritionist $58,610 9 percent

Campus Opportunities for Equine Studies Majors

Agriculture Club

Equine Studies Courses You May Take

  • Horsemanship 1 – Through this lab course students learn the basics of riding and handling horses. 
  • Horse Production Practices – Gain an understanding of what is involved in the selection, handling, feeding, and management of horses.
  • Horse Science and Industry – Explore the economic importance and workings of the horse industry.

Contact Agriculture & Nutrition