Identification and Pursuit of Instructional Grants to Support the Development of Undergraduate Equine Courses Carissa Wickens and Tanya Gressley Department of Animal and Food Sciences, University of Delaware College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Materials and Methods
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Identification and Pursuit of Instructional Grants to Support the Development of Undergraduate Equine Courses
Carissa Wickens and Tanya Gressley
Department of Animal and Food Sciences, University of Delaware
College of Agriculture and Natural Resources
The current economic climate within higher education requires vigilance to potential funding sources to support the growth and sustainability of equine focused course offerings. Providing undergraduate students with a capstone experience during the later part of their academic program has become a priority for many colleges and universities. For example, all Animal Science students at the University of Delaware (UD) must compete a capstone course in order to graduate. Development of an equine capstone course requires substantial financial inputs for the purchase of supplies and reference materials necessary to facilitate hands-on student learning activities and to enable the culminating project. Many institutions of higher education have Centers for Teaching and Learning which offer funding opportunities for faculty seeking to develop new courses or to improve existing courses. Instructional grants vary in award amounts and also may differ with respect to proposal guidelines and the types of projects considered for funding. However, teaching-centered funding sources present an avenue through which equine studies programs and animal science departments may be able to secure financial support to enhance their equine curriculum. This poster describes the pursuit of funding for the development of an equine capstone course at UD, and provides suggestions for where faculty at other institutions may seek financial support for teaching projects.
Example of full mounted equine skeleton being purchased for teaching.
Equine Teaching and Extension at UD
The Department of Animal and Food Sciences (ANFS) at UD has one faculty member responsible for teaching undergraduate courses in equine science. This faculty member was recently hired to teach one existing course, ANFS 220 Introduction to Equine Science, and to develop new courses including the equine capstone course. Future courses may include Equine Behavior and Welfare, Equine Nutrition, and Issues in the Equine Industry. The equine teaching facilities include a new, six-stall barn (Figure 1), a 60’ x 80’ indoor arena (Figure 2), and designated horse pastures. At present, the farm is home to 10 horses (Arabians, Quarter Horses, and one Haflinger) used to support teaching, research, and extension activities (Figure 3). The equine faculty member and UD Cooperative Extension are working to expand educational programs and resources for equine constituents (both adult and youth) in the state of Delaware. Efforts are underway to administer an educational needs assessment survey and to create an online information resource for equine owners.
Equine teaching barn built in 2007 with the help of a $400,000 Unidel Grant.
Examples of Institutional Funding Opportunities
Michigan State University, Office of Faculty & Organizational Development
Lilly Teaching Fellows Program
Penn State University, Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence
Teaching Support Grants
Sul Ross State University, Teaching Council
Faculty Development and Enrichment Application
University of Georgia, Center for Teaching and Learning
Learning Technologies Grants
Lilly Teaching Fellows Program
Senior Teaching Fellows Program
University of Maryland, Center for Teaching Excellence
Improvement of Instruction Grants Proposals
University of Wyoming, The Ellbogen Center for Teaching and Learning
Course Redesign Grants
Indoor arena used for teaching. The ceiling and arena surface were renovated during the spring 2010 semester with support from the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.
Three Arabian horses joined the teaching herd in December, 2009. The horses are pictured grazing a primarily Bermudagrass pasture recently established by UD Cooperative Extension Agronomy Specialist, Richard Taylor.