Bringing the southern charm to intercollegiate eventing, the Florida State University (FSU) Eventing team has their sights set on making their championship debut at the 2019 USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championships, May 18-19 at the Chattahoochee Hill Horse Trials in Fairburn, Georgia. In 2018, the University of Florida (UF) drove fourteen hours to make their championship debut and now the sunshine state will add another big school to the list of teams competing at the annual USEA Intercollegiate Championships. The team of 19 members has Emma Taylor, the FSU Eventing Team President, and Taylor Reynolds, the FSU Eventing Team Vice President, working behind the scenes making sure the team is firing on all cylinders – from tracking student dues to abiding by the rules set in place by FSU.
With every school having a unique set of guidelines for sports teams, club sports, and student organizations, the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program has to default to the rules already established by the school. Taylor explained FSU’s rules: "We are a Registered Student Organization (RSO) at FSU. This means that we have to go through a lengthy process at the start of each year involving hazing prevention courses, drug and alcohol courses, informational sessions, RSO handbook assessments, and club constitution approval. As leaders and members, we must be in good academic standing with the university. We also adhere to the university non-discrimination statement. Finally, we must be sure that all of our promotional and/or fundraising materials abide by FSU’s copyright rules.”
The growth in FSU team members, the new location for the championships, and using Intercollegiate Team Challenges as preparation, Taylor and Reynolds share their excitement for the 2019 Intercollegiate Championships. “With more members interested in competing, we plan on attending the 2019 Intercollegiate Championships. The past few years we have been unable to go, but we are incredibly excited to be attending this year.”
Raising funds and growing the team are several items at the top of their list for 2019, and like any other eventers, the FSU Eventing Team members are no strangers to working hard to reach a goal. T-shirt fundraisers, selling car decals, bake sales, and working with local businesses for sponsorship opportunities are several ways the team plans to raise funds. As far as growth, Reynolds emphasized that, “We are always happy to accept new members who are in good standing with FSU and love the sport as much as we do. Anyone at any riding level is welcome to join and participate in team activities. While most of our current members are riding under the same instructor, members are welcome to ride with whomever they choose.”
Education is another item that tops the list of 2019 team goals and for multiple years in a row, the FSU Eventing Team has furthered their education about upper level eventing by volunteering at the Red Hills International Horse Trials. “We also hope to add more activities such as clinics and workshops from vets, farriers, and other professionals to help our members learn more about the equestrian world in general. For example, we are fortunate to learn about the development of young horses starting from birth. Living at Iron Star [Equestrian] is a Trakehner foal named Charley, and several of our members had the opportunity to watch his birth last May. Our team members have enjoyed watching him grow and giving him lots of attention.”
"Our common purpose is rooted in a love for horses and eventing. Members on our team come from a wide range of backgrounds, and that is what makes it so special,” said Reynolds. One sport, one team, and one shared passion - the love for three-day eventing is apparent in the FSU Eventing Team!
About the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program
The USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program was established in 2014 to provide a framework within which eventing teams and individual competitors could flourish at universities and colleges across the country. The USEA offers a discount of $25 on annual USEA memberships for current students of universities and colleges registered as Affiliates with the USEA. Many events across the country now offer Intercollegiate Team Challenges where collegiate eventers can compete individually as well as on teams with their fellow students. In Intercollegiate Team Challenges, each rider’s score is multiplied by a coefficient appropriate for their level to account for differences in level difficulty and then the individual scores are added together to determine the team score. Click here to learn more about the Intercollegiate Eventing Program.
The USEA wants to feature your intercollegiate eventing team in our Intercollegiate Eventing Spotlight series! Please send your story and photos to Jessica Duffy to be featured.
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