June 4, 2009
Writer: Laici Wedel, 979-845-2886, firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact: Dr. Clay Cavinder, 979-845-7731, email@example.com
COLLEGE STATION — The Texas A&M University Horse Judging Team placed first at the 2009 National Reining Breeder’s Classic, earning the NRBC Futurity for the second time in three years.
The competition was held April 18 in Katy. Eight teams from throughout the nation competed for the title.
Ryan Rushing of New Braunfels led the team with first place. He was the high individual overall. Other team members were Shannon Sams of Helotes, fourth overall; Tara Smesny of Pleasanton, fifth overall; Ari Sear of Simonton, sixth overall; and Amy Heartfield of Belton, ninth overall.
The team is coached by Dr. Clay Cavinder, assistant professor of equine science in the department of animal science at Texas A&M’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.
Cavinder said this year’s team has worked hard and progressed throughout the season. “This team has overcome quite a bit,” he said. “They’ve encountered some adversity and learned that winning is not everything. They’ve really learned what it means to be a ‘team.’”
The horse judging team is designed for students interested in equine selection and performance evaluation.
According to the team’s Web site, http://animalscience.tamu.edu/teams/horse-judging/index.htm, participation in team activities provides experience in analytical and critical thinking, judgment, and written and oral communication. These skills can be useful in a career as a breed association judge and in other professions in the horse and agricultural industries.
The first Texas A&M horse judging team began competing in 1972. Since then, the team has won 21 national championships, more than any other school in the nation.
About the college:
With an enrollment of almost 6,700 students in 14 academic departments, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Texas A&M University offers more than 80 undergraduate and graduate degrees and has a faculty of nearly 400 members, including two Nobel laureates. Research programs include food sustainability and safety, human and animal health, genetics, renewable natural resources and bioenergy. Mark Hussey is Vice Chancellor and Dean.
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