The equine industry is truly international with a wide range of job opportunities enabling graduates to travel around the world and enjoy challenging careers.
Despite the recent economic challenges, the equine industry continues to be a significant employer. It is widely recognised that Ireland holds one of the top positions in the world’s equine industry and Irish horses, riders, jockeys, trainers and owners regularly succeed at the highest international levels.
Figures provided by the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association (ITBA), Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) and Horse Sport Ireland (HSI) (2010-12) indicate that together the TB and Sports Horse sectors and ancillary businesses employ approximately 30 000 people on a full-time and part-time basis. The Irish TB industry is worth €902 million each year and there are over 9 500 registered TB breeders. The University College Dublin (UCD) report on the Economic Contribution of the Sport Horse Industry to the Irish Economy (2012) stated that the Sport Horse sector is worth €708 million and there are over 12 000 Sport Horse breeders.
The British Horse Society (BHS) (2011) and British Horse Industry Confederation (BHIC) (2009) estimate that there is £2.5 billion spent on equine services and products annually within the UK. There are over 1 million horses and ponies, 18 000 equine businesses and approximately 250 000 jobs in the equine sector.
The latest study in NI indicates that there were 35,600 horses and ponies, with an estimated £110 million spent on goods and services, creating 5,660 full-time job equivalents, excluding those jobs in the ancillary sector.
Enniskillen Campus aims to produce students with the ability to succeed in a wide range of careers within the equine industry. Our courses develop both academic and practical skills thus ensuring greater versatility and increased employment opportunities.
We currently provide the widest range of courses in Equine Studies in Ireland; courses which have been developed through balancing the needs of the industry with the career aspirations of students. Our aim is to assist the development of a competitive equine industry and give the students an insight into the many different local and international equine related opportunities available.
Equine facilities at Enniskillen Campus
Equine courses offered at Enniskillen Campus include a strong practical dimension which is underpinned by the excellent equestrian resources and facilities. The Campus owns a number of Thoroughbred and Sport Horse mares and young stock which provide students with hands-on experience in the routine care and management of breeding stock.
The campus racing unit enables students to care for racehorses on a daily basis and participate in point-to-point racing. Facilities include stabling for 14 horses, a horse walker, a racehorse simulator, an indoor arena, an all-weather turnout, gallops and a race training track.
The equitation unit enables students to continually develop appropriate horse training skills. Facilities include the outdoor arena, indoor arena, horse walker, stabling for 22 horses, equitation simulator, hacking tacks and a cross country schooling area. These facilities and equitation horses enable students to identify and develop a range of skills required to prepare and or exercise a horse for a variety of situations including attending competitions/shows to represent the college.