The thoroughbred stud sector is benefiting from a new wave of skilled staff. These highly employable workers have completed a new qualification at Writtle University College (WUC) in Essex, which combines hands-on experience with expert theory.
The Certificate of Higher Education in Thoroughbred Stud Operations launched in September 2019. The one-year course was created with input from some of the most prestigious names in UK thoroughbred production. It offers an unrivalled work experience placement during the foaling season, in addition to expert theory, delivered by WUC's knowledgeable academics.
Student Eleanor said: "The course has also given me an excellent grounding and overview of the industry as a whole and I feel I can confidently converse with experienced staff about industry issues".
WUC Lecturer in Equine, Caroline Farr, said: "We knew that the Thoroughbred Stud Operations course would offer a fantastic opportunity for our students and the industry. We have enjoyed following the progress of these students as they work with some of the highest quality racehorses in the UK. The skills and experience our students develop, offers them the chance to enter what can be a very rewarding career."
Students learn how to meet the requirements of the foaling mare whilst developing a sense of the scale of the industry. The aim is to provide the student with a thorough understanding of producing these high-performance athletes; enabling them to contribute positively to the industry following completion of the course.
Recent graduates benefited from generous scholarships. The Racing Foundation covered all tuition fees for two students and Shadwell Stud offered tuition fees and accommodation costs for four more learners. Shadwell's beneficiaries will now start a further year with the organisation for an outstanding grounding in the production of top class racehorses, including six months in their breaking, pre-training and rehabilitation centre.
Eleanor, who received a Shadwell scholarship, said: "when I saw the scholarship for the course at Writtle advertised I thought what a great opportunity and why not give it a go. Thank goodness I did, as now I am in the Thoroughbred breeding industry I don't want to leave!"
The Certificate of Higher Education in Thoroughbred Stud Operations will return for the new academic year in September 2020. To learn more about the scholarships still on offer, or to apply for a place on the course, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or go to https://writtle.ac.uk/Certificate-of-Higher-Education-in-Thoroughbred-Stud-Operations.