The Stars Aligned

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Shawn & I at Pinto Congress

Shawn & I at Pinto Congress

It's funny to think that just about two and a half months ago I was sitting in my room at college, in my home state of Missouri, pondering my options for the summer.

At that time, I was getting my school horse Shawn, aka Unzip This, an APHA/PtHA registered gelding, ready for Pinto World in June. But the thought kept crossing my mind that maybe I should shoot for an internship this summer.

I began casually looking for internships, and I was hoping for something in the marketing/publishing industry that revolved around horses. After just a few minutes of searching, I literally stumbled onto a Web site that offered some equestrian internships; among them was Horse&Rider magazine, in Boulder, Colorado.

I grew up reading H&R and had always dreamed of working for a magazine like that; I knew it would be a perfect fit for me. Luckily, I found it just a few days before the deadline. I rushed to get all of my materials organized and, with fingers crossed, mailed my application.

After I was offered the internship, I received many "go for it" speeches from my professors, and I gave H&R a solid yes. It was actually a fairly hard decision. Being an avid horse show girl, it was hard to choose between two wonderful things. But I know showing will always be there, and this was an opportunity I had to take.

So here I am, a newly-turned 21-year-old, nearly 650 miles and 10 hours away from home, working in Boulder for H&R!

Now that you know how I got here, let me tell you where I'm from. I'm a Missouri native, born and bred, and a small town country girl. I live in a little town south of Kansas City and attend William Woods University, in Fulton, Missouri.

My college is well-known for its prestigious four-seat equestrian program that offers many equestrian degrees and allows students to show horses in Western, hunter-jumper, saddle seat, and dressage, across the county (it is not an intercollegiate program). I just finished my junior year at the Woods, and I am majoring in Graphic Design, with a minor in Equestrian Science.

I have been lucky in that, since I was 10, I've been able to own horses. Currently, I own an 8-year-old bay Quarter Horse gelding. I have 14 years of riding experience?showing nine of those years in All-Around events?along with five years of horse-judging experience.

I favor Quarter Horses and Paints, and my heart is in showing Western & hunt-seat; however, I have also tried my luck at showing Saddlebreds, with some added experience on Arabians, Friesians, Andalusians, and National Show Horses.

Even though my niche is showing, I'm a huge rodeo fan and am always up for a relaxing trail ride?or even cattle work. I plan on keeping horses for the rest of my life, and I hope to have a training facility of my own?I might even earn a few judging cards and continue with my career in the Equestrian or Agricultural Marketing industries.

So readers, if you see an odd-ball Missouri license-plated car and one of the few drivers jamming to country music, cruising around Boulder, that's me! I hope to meet some of you at local horse shows or rodeos, and I'm looking forward to a summer full of adventure as the Horse&Rider intern!

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