The mission of the equestrian studies department at Houghton College is to equip students with a broad base of knowledge in classical horsemanship encompassing theory and philosophy, riding, the teaching of riding and care of the horse while cultivating Christ-like character, enabling students to become effective scholar-servants.
Known for academic excellence, professionalism and experiential learning, the Houghton College Equestrian Studies program began more than 30 years ago with two classes, the donation of seven horses, a limited tack and a small outdoor arena built by college students. Today, the program boasts four faculty members, 25 lesson horses and an academic curriculum of 20 different classes leading to two major tracks and two minors. Students from as far as California, Texas and Washington come to Houghton to pursue equine studies and train under Certified Horsemanship Association (CHA)-certified professors and Olympic- and Fédération Équestre Internationale-level clinicians. The Houghton College Equestrian Center currently hosts public events such as classes, competitions, United States Equestrian Federation and CHA clinics, and a sold-out, multi-week equestrian summer camp.