Tag Archives: IHSA

Amy Pitts Awarded IHSA Senior Academic Achievement Essay Honors

Amy Pitts at an IHSA show at Crosswinds Equestrian Center, Lagrangeville, New York. Photo courtesy of Amy Pitts.

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – June 8, 2020 –The Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) recognizes students through the Intercollegiate Equestrian Foundation (IEF) with scholarships and academic awards. The IHSA Senior Academic Award is granted to seniors who have earned a 3.5 grade-point average or higher. To win the Senior Academic Achievement Essay Award, they must first meet Senior Award requirements. Then, they must submit a 500-word essay about how their IHSA and academic experience have prepared them for a future career. Amy Pitts (New Haven, Vermont), a member of the Marist College team, exceeded the criteria and submitted the winning essay.

“Amy has been an invaluable member of our equestrian team since she joined in 2016,” said Clare Knapp-Englehart, IHSA board member and coach of the Marist College team. “For four years, she has worked tirelessly to serve the team in any capacity possible and was the only candidate we considered for treasurer. Amy is highly intelligent, incredibly disciplined, amazingly organized, and a complete team player.”

Pitts, a double major in applied mathematicians and data science with a minor in computer science, qualified for Regionals in the World Equestrian Center Limit Equitation on the Flat division.

“Our region adjusted the schedule to accommodate Amy so she could rush back to school to present the keynote address for the Honor Society induction that evening,” Knapp-Englehart said. “Sadly, Regionals were canceled due to COVID-19.”

In addition to serving on the Marist College Equestrian Team executive board as treasurer, Pitts was president of both Pi Mu Epsilon (a math honors society) and the Association for Women in Mathematics. She also served as the vice president of Marist Math Club and for two years ran the Marist math lab. Pitts also participated in research with Marist faculty during the academic year and over the summers.

Pitts has accepted a fellowship at Columbia University to study in their Ph.D. biostatistics program.

“Amy has been an unsung hero for a Marist Equestrian Team, and is a great representation of the IHSA,” Knapp-Englehart said. “I cannot think of a more fitting student-athlete for this award.”

Read Amy Pitts’ Essay

For more information, go to IHSAinc.com or contact media@IHSAinc.com.

APHA World Championship Show to Offer Invitational Class for IHSA Western Open Riders

Photo APHA/Paint Horse Journal.

Fairfield, Conn. – June 3, 2020 – The American Paint Horse Association (APHA) will offer an invitational class for the Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) 2020 Western Regional Open division high-point riders at their APHA World Championship Show. The premier all-age breed show will be held at the Will Rogers Memorial Center in Fort Worth, Texas, Sept. 21 – Oct. 4, 2020. The APHA will announce the schedule details when they are confirmed.

“APHA is very excited about the opportunity to host this event,” said Dave Dellin, American Paint Horse Association’s senior director of judges, shows, and education. “This will be an awesome opportunity for lots of young equestrians to experience the Paint horse and the APHA World Show.”

This year, the APHA World Championship Show will offer Open, Amateur, and Youth Divisions. This event is the first time IHSA will participate in the APHA event and kicks off a new partnership between the two organizations.

“We are thrilled that the APHA has offered this class to our Western high-point riders,” said Peter Cashman, IHSA executive director. “It is a wonderful opportunity to showcase our members and our organization at a major event. We look forward to working with the APHA.”

IHSA 2020 Western Regional high-point riders are invited to participate and horses will be provided. Though the show is produced by the APHA, the riders will draw for horses and the division will be run much like the IHSA classes. The invitational class will be a two-phase competition with a horsemanship and a reining phase.

The IHSA has showcased their Open level hunter seat riders at events like the Longines Masters New York and the National Horse Show in Lexington, Kentucky. The APHA World Championship Show will be the first-ever standalone feature class for IHSA Western Open riders at a world-class competition.

For more information, go to IHSAinc.com or contact media@IHSAinc.com.

IHSA Celebrated in Special Issue of USHJA In Stride Magazine

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – May 13, 2020 – Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) teams and members were celebrated by Membership Partner United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) in a special digital issue of its In Stride magazine. In Stride is a bi-monthly publication produced by the USHJA and is the magazine for up-to-date and informative news for the hunter/jumper community.

“We are honored to have such a great partnership with the USHJA,” said Peter Cashman, IHSA executive director. “We have such amazing members and teams and their stories and successes deserve to be shared with the equestrian industry.”

The special issue of In Stride celebrates IHSA regional champions after the cancellation of the postseason due to the COVID-19 pandemic and honors this year’s academic and athletic award and scholarship winners.

The issue shares heartfelt letters from IHSA members to the board of directors about the impact membership has had on their lives and features members giving back after tragedies such as the fire at Muddy Brook Farm in November 2019 and the tornadoes that ravaged central Tennessee earlier this year.

READ NOW

For more information, go to IHSAinc.com or contact media@IHSAinc.com.

IHSA to Cancel Remainder of Season

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – March 12, 2020 –The Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) executive committee regrets to announce their decision to cancel the remainder of the 2019/2020 competition season. This cancellation applies to all IHSA shows including Zones, Western Semi-Finals, and Nationals. Our top priority is the well-being and safety of all our members. This decision was not made lightly and is based on the latest information concerning the coronavirus (COVID-19).

We recognize the hard work and effort put forward by the membership, the hours of practice, volunteerism, fundraising, and team spirit of the student members and the dedication and leadership of the coaches.

We encourage IHSA members to refer to the CDC website for up-to-date information on the status of the coronavirus and to follow prevention measures and personal care recommendations. Members are also urged to follow the advice of your state and community concerning any specific coronavirus guidelines and travel policies.

We look forward to the IHSA 2020/2021 season.

For more information, go to IHSAinc.com or contact media@IHSAinc.com.

IHSA Founder Bob Cacchione to Retire from Executive Director Position

Bob Cacchione shakes Lizzy Traband’s hand during Nationals at Harrisburg in 2018. Photo by Madison Dempster.

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – Sept. 3, 2019 – Robert E. “Bob” Cacchione, the charismatic leader of the Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA), will retire from the executive director position of the organization he founded. Cacchione announced his decision in a letter to the IHSA board of directors, effective Sept. 1. He will continue to promote and support the IHSA and will assume the role of founder emeritus. Peter Cashman, IHSA second vice president and co-coach of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point’s equestrian team, will assume the role of interim executive director until a formal board election will take place June 2020.

“It’s been a great ride,” Cacchione said. “It’s been my passion and my life’s work. Never did I dream that it would be what it is today. I want to thank all the dedicated coaches and past and current board members for working to build this great organization. It has been an honor. The IHSA is in capable hands and will continue to grow and thrive. I’ll still be around to advise and help in any way I can.”

Cacchione has made a profound impact on the equestrian world. As many as 250,000 men and women have participated in the IHSA since 1967 when he founded the organization as an 18-year-old student at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, New Jersey. Cacchione’s brainchild was born out of his determination to find a way to ride while in college without the financial support of his parents. He and mentor and adviser Jack Fritz, a renowned horseman active in the governance of several equestrian disciplines, developed the prototype of IHSA competition, which included catch-riding appropriate horses, drawn out of a hat, that were supplied by host schools.

Launched with just two colleges competing in hunter seat equitation, the IHSA was praised for its innovative format and quickly caught on. In 1979 the Western divisions premiered at the IHSA National Championship Horse Show. In 1999, IHSA Inc. was established as a nonprofit organization.

The organization now has over 400 participating colleges and universities and 10,000 members. IHSA is comprised of 39 regions in 8 eight zones in 47 states and Canada. Because the IHSA offers all levels of competition, from beginner through advanced, and offers college students a way to learn to how to ride, it makes a significant impact on the grassroots development of the equestrian sports.

IHSA members make up 10 percent of the membership of the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) and the IHSA is credited for being the single greatest source of new members to the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA).

Some of the most notable riders in show jumping and the Western disciplines competed in the IHSA during their college years. Four-time Olympian and two-time Olympic gold medalist Beezie Madden competed for Southern Seminary and won the Cacchione Cup in 1984. Olympic gold medalist Peter Wylde won the Cacchione Cup in 1986 while he attended Tufts University.

As executive director for 52 years, Cacchione has proudly led the IHSA, shaking the hands of every competitor at the IHSA National Championship Horse Show and working tirelessly alongside board members who have become lifelong friends. With his devotion to the IHSA and the number of lives it has impacted, Cacchione is regularly recognized and acknowledged during his travels by people from all walks of life who once participated in the IHSA.

“From September to May, I traveled to a show every weekend,” he said. “I’ve loved it, but I look forward to less travel and more time with family.”

Cacchione has been recognized for his commitment to college riding with the IHSA Lifetime Achievement Award, the USHJA Presidents Distinguished Service Award, US Equestrian/EQUUS Foundation Humanitarian Award, a Doctor of Humane Letters from Centenary College, and the American Horse Publications Equine Industry Vision Award. He also serves as vice-chairman of the Gentlemen’s Committee of the National Horse Show at the Kentucky Horse Park.

For more information, go to IHSAinc.com or contact media@IHSAinc.com.

IHSA Announces Western Riders for AQHA Horsemanship Challenge

2013 IHSA AQHA High Point Rider, Austin Griffith, riding Little Bill. Photo credits: Rich Ormanowski.

Fairfield, CT — June 18, 2013 – The Intercollegiate Horse Show Association is pleased to announce eight IHSA Western Horsemanship riders have been selected to participate in the 2013 American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) Horsemanship Challenge, November 20-21, during the AQHA World Championship Show in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

The IHSA riders selected include the 2013 IHSA National Championships’ AQHA High Point Rider (Austin Griffith, Ohio State University) and reserve AQHA High Point Rider (Ashley Winters, University of Findlay, who continued her season despite the grief of losing her AQHA show horse to cancer), and a member of the 2013 IHSA National Championships High Point Western Team, Julia Roberts, of West Texas A&M University, who was also selected in 2012 but was competing in collegiate judging (she and her WTAMU team went on to become reserve champions). Emily Honey, of Oregon State University, represents the second (Elizabeth Whitman, 2012) consecutive time OSU riders have earned a slot in the AQHA Horsemanship Challenge.

The complete list of IHSA riders selected for the AQHA Horsemanship Challenge is as follows:

Julia Roberts, West Texas A&M University
Austin Griffith, Ohio State University
Douglas Mohr, Ball State University
Emily Honey, Oregon State University
Alissa Frederick, Black Hawk College
Rebecca Strunk, Clemson University
Ashley Winters, University of Findlay
Kodi Anderson, North Central Texas College

Austin Griffith, a business and marketing major at Ohio State, cited both hard work and the IHSA as integral to the path leading him to OKC. The newly-minted AQHA High Point Rider from the 2013 IHSA National Championships is also a two-time (2008, 2009) winner at AQHA Congress.

“I was so excited when I received the invitation,” says the IHSA National’s 2013 reserve AQHA High Point Rider, Ashley Winters, a freshman majoring in Environmental Safety and Occupational Health and Western Equestrian Studies at The University of Findlay. “During the show season I lost my AQHA show horse to cancer. This was an extremely hard time for me and the only way to cope was to keep riding. I knew the open level was going to be really tough and worked really hard, practicing five times a week for reining and horsemanship. The Findlay IHSA Team has wonderful coaches. At Nationals, their advice was to go out there and show them what a freshman can do.” Now she gets her chance to show them at AQHA Worlds.

For Douglas Mohr, who will represent Ball State, it’s a dream come true. “Ever since hearing of the AQHA Collegiate Challenge, it’s been a dream to be selected and represent my university, and now that dream is a reality. It’s a huge honor to be one of eight IHSA riders picked, and I am very grateful. To be surrounded by the best collegiate riders will be a humbling and rewarding experience.” Mohr will pursue a Master’s in Occupational Therapy, having just earned his Bachelor’s in Exercise Science.

Rebecca Strunk is also among the IHSA 8
Rebecca Strunk is also among the IHSA 8

Animal and Veterinary Science major, Rebecca Strunk (’15), adds, “I was honestly shocked to be invited to this prestigious event. It makes all the long hours of practice worth it. It’s an honor to represent Clemson University and hope to do so to the best of my abilities.”

The eight collegiate equestrian athletes representing their educational institutions in the Challenge were selected based on their 2012-13 individual statistics for horsemanship. Preliminary AQHA Horsemanship Challenge competition will take place Wednesday, November 20, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and the AQHA Horsemanship Challenge finals will be held the evening of November 21. Three IHSA alternates have also been identified, pending availability of the original eight candidates.

About IHSA

The IHSA mission is to promote competition for riders of all skill levels, who compete individually and as teams at regional and national levels. IHSA is based on the principle that any college student should be able to participate in horse shows regardless of financial status or riding level. More than 400 educational institutions in the U.S. and parts of Canada have teams belonging to IHSA, including student academic clubs, JV, and/or varsity programs. Learn more at www.ihsainc.com and connect with more than 6,800 student riders and coaches on Facebook and Twitter @IHSAinc.

IHSA Media Liaison:
L. A. Pomeroy
(413) 586-6121
PomeroyLA@aol.com
www.ihsainc.com

IHSA to Celebrate 40 Years of America’s Oldest and Largest Collegiate Equestrian National Championships

Fairfield, CT – April 28, 2013 – In 1973 there were no cell phones, home computers, smart cars or internet but there were a determined handful of college coaches and teams who met in good-natured competition for what became the first annual Intercollegiate Horse Show Association National Championships. This May 2-5, the Equine Arena of the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg will host the 40th celebration of what are now the oldest and largest collegiate equestrian national championships in America, bringing together more than two dozen teams and 400 individual riders who qualified through regional and zone finals for the privilege of competing as college riding’s best of the best.

Following the conclusion of western Semi Finals and hunter seat Zone Finals, the following teams, respectively, have qualified:

Western teams:

  • Zone 1/2 SUNY-Oswego
  • Zone 3/4 St. Andrews University
  • Zone 5 Middle Tennessee State University
  • Zone 6 Ohio State University, University of Findlay, University of Kentucky
  • Zone 7 West Texas A&M University
  • Zone 8 California State Polytechnic University-Pomona, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Hunter seat champion/reserve teams:

  • Zone 1 Mount Holyoke College/University of New Hampshire
  • Zone 2 St. Lawrence University/Skidmore College
  • Zone 3 Centenary College/Delaware Valley College
  • Zone 4 St. Andrews University/Goucher College
  • Zone 5 Berry College/Savannah College of Art & Design
  • Zone 6 Otterbein University/University of Findlay
  • Zone 7 Purdue University/Louisiana State University
  • Zone 8 Stanford University/University of Colorado-Boulder

Find lists of IHSA National team, individual, high point rider and alumni entries: https://members.ihsainc.com/publicnationals/nationalentries.aspx.

The Nationals’ strong support includes partners AQHA, USHJA, USEF, and NRHA. NRHA President, Beth Himes, will attend Saturday, May 4, as will 1996 U.S. Olympic Show Jumping Silver medalist Peter Leone, to autograph copies of his book, Show Jumping Clinic (provided among hunter seat awards).

National Show Hunter Hall of Famer/CA Professional Horsemen’s Association Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Bernie Traurig of EquestrianCoach.com will present Excellence Awards offering internships with Missy Clark or Tim McQuay, and an Antares Helmet or $500 Pards Western Shop gift certificate.

Streaming video coverage be through the EPCO Group. Those who cannot attend Harrisburg can follow embedded links on IHSAinc.com and the IHSA Facebook page.

Thanks to Florida State University IHSA Western coach Jean Anthony, Wind Creek Casino and Hotel will sponsor NRHA Inside Reining coverage of IHSA western and reining classes for its July programming schedule with host Jenifer Reynolds, who began covering news and rodeo in Oklahoma City, earning a DuPont-Columbia Award for broadcast journalism while in college (the only student to ever do so).

New sponsors and vendors include Green Valley Tack, on site and providing Ariat Olympia, Pikeur, and Frantisi Grand Prix riding wear. Mental skills coach Tonya Johnston’s new book, Inside Your Ride, is among the awards as are free coaching sessions for one lucky rider. New this year are the personalized services of Signature Spurs and Bains Whips, plus Ariat, EquiFit, Flex Trunk, Noble Equine, Parlanti, RJ Classics, Samshield and Valley Vet.

In addition to support at Regionals and Zones/Semi-Finals, SmartPak Equine will sponsor 25 team gift baskets, silent auction items, and Hunt Seat Horse of the Show and Western Horse of the Show award packages including a year of SmartPak supplements, bridle or headstall, and engraved plaque.

The IHSA appreciates the enduring support of BridlePlates.com, Charles Owen, Chronicle of the Horse, Collegiate, ECE Equestrian Collection, Hodges Badge, Hoof and Woof, IPPOS, Oakcroft, Perri’s Leather, Phelps Media Group, Revitavet, Total Equestrian and Weatherbeeta.

The show program cover artist is Judy Goldthwait, a 1998 graduate of Cazenovia College with a BFA in Commercial Illustration, whose commissions include IHSA and New England Equitation Championships.

At noon, Saturday, May 4, IHSA athletes will welcomed by Harrisburg Mayor, Linda D. Thompson, before scholarship presentations and awarding of the USEF/Cacchione Cup.

“We deeply appreciate the diverse support of our industry,” said show manager, Bill Yeager.

Admission and parking are free to the public and are a chance for families looking at colleges and scholarship opportunities to learn what is available for students while finding top-notch riding and boutique shopping experiences.

The IHSA mission is to promote competition for riders of all skill levels, who compete individually and as teams at regional and national levels. IHSA is based on the principle that any college student should be able to participate in horse shows regardless of financial status or riding level. More than 400 educational institutions in the U.S. and parts of Canada have teams belonging to IHSA, including student academic clubs, JV, and/or varsity programs. Learn more at www.ihsainc.com and connect with more than 6,800 student riders and coaches on Facebook and Twitter @IHSAinc.

IHSA Media Liaison:
L. A. Pomeroy
(413) 586-6121
PomeroyLA@aol.com
www.ihsainc.com

IHSA among Top Four Finalists Selected for 12th Annual Equine Industry Vision Award

Fairfield, CT – April 23, 2013 – The Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) is among the four finalists for the 2013 Equine Industry Vision Award. Sponsored by Zoetis (formerly Pfizer Animal Health), the award is intended to recognize innovation, leadership and service. Judges praised this year’s record number of nominees, hailing from nine states, Canada and New Zealand, as outstanding examples of these qualities. Prior EIVA winners, which may be individuals or organizations, include IHSA executive director Robert E. Cacchione (2011).

The six members of the Equine Industry Vision Award Committee reviewed the nominations and narrowed 21 nominees to four finalists: Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA), CT; Tootie Bland, Owner/Producer of Road to the Horse, TX; Certified Horsemanship Association (CHA), KY; and Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Int’l.), CO.

The remaining 17 nominees included: Active Interest Media, “Home For Every Horse” program, CO; Dr. Gregory Beroza, Founder, Long Island Equine Medical Center, NY; Michael Blowen, Founder, Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement, KY; John Byrd, DVM, Founder and Owner of Horsemen’s Laboratory, IL; Keith Chamblin, Sr. VP, National Thoroughbred Racing Association, KY; Ellen DiBella, Founder, Western Dressage Association of America, CO; Darrell Dodds, Publisher, Western Horseman Magazine, TX; EquiBalance Horse Trailers, New Zealand; Equine Guelph, Canada; Interscholastic Equestrian Association, OH; Charles H. (Chuck) Mintzlaff, Founder of Friendship Training, TX; Lynda Roemer, Owner and Director of Equine Rescue, Inc., NY; Jochen Schleese, Owner/Founder of Schleese Saddlery, Canada; Mark Sellers, Founder and CEO of EquiMed LLC, CA; Eugenia Snyder, Founder and President, Equine Affaire, Inc., OH; Linda Tellington-Jones, Founder of TTEAM and TTouch, HI; Lyndsey White, Co-Founder of Rider4Helmets, KY.

The AHP Board of Directors, plus a Zoetis representative, voted for the winner. Finalists were judged on their performance in relation to the achievement(s) cited and their demonstration of the following attributes and abilities: 1) The vision and innovation of a true pioneer; 2) Leadership, commitment, dedication and willingness to serve; 3) Original and effective ideas and/or products, services, programs; 4) High moral, ethical and professional standards.

The official announcement and presentation of the award will be made at the Equine Industry Vision Award Breakfast on Friday, June 21, 2013 during the AHP Meet the Peak Seminar in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The recipient will be presented with the EIVA Perpetual Trophy, created by master artisan Peter Wayne Yenawine, and the first to showcase innovation across the equine industry. It is intended to serve as a unique recognition of ingenuity and service, and benefit the industry by inspiring these qualities in others. The EIVA recognizes outstanding leadership, creativity and meritorious contributions in the equine industry.

Prior recipients: Alexander Mackay-Smith (2002), Don Burt (2003), AQHA (2004), John R. Gaines (2005), Stanley Bergstein (2006), David O’Connor (2007), Sally Swift (2008), Charlotte Kneeland (2009), John Nicholson (2010), Robert E. Cacchione (2011), and ELCR (2012).

About IHSA
The IHSA mission is to promote competition for riders of all skill levels, who compete individually and as teams at regional and national levels. IHSA is based on the principle that any college student should be able to participate in horse shows regardless of financial status or riding level. More than 400 educational institutions in the U.S. and parts of Canada have teams belonging to IHSA, including student academic clubs, JV, and/or varsity programs. Learn more at www.ihsainc.com and connect with more than 6,800 student riders and coaches on Facebook and Twitter @IHSAinc.

IHSA Media Liaison:
L. A. Pomeroy
(413) 586-6121
PomeroyLA@aol.com
www.ihsainc.com

More Than Good Horse Sense: IHSA Rider among Rhodes Scholars for 2nd Time in Two Years

Rhodes Scholar Rachel Kolb aboard Ronny. Photos courtesy Stanford Univ/IHSA

Fairfield, CT – December 5, 2012 – Stride for stride, solid horse sense leads to scholarly achievement. For the second time in two years, the Rhodes Trust has awarded a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship to an Intercollegiate Horse Show Association college equestrian athlete to pursue post-graduate study at Oxford University.

This year’s recipient is IHSA hunter seat rider Rachel Kolb of Los Ranchos, NM, who is in her second year as president of the Stanford Equestrian Team, and co-terminal year at Stanford (CA) University (i.e., she will graduate this year with a BA in English/minor in Human Biology and a Masters in English).

Kolb is Stanford’s 2012 IHSA Regional Champion in Intermediate Flat and Fences, and has twice helped bring the team to the national Top Ten: At the 2010 IHSA Nationals, in Team Intermediate Fences, where Stanford finished fourth, and again at the 2011 IHSA National Championships, in Team Intermediate Flat (Stanford placed sixth).

Continue reading More Than Good Horse Sense: IHSA Rider among Rhodes Scholars for 2nd Time in Two Years

Intercollegiate Horse Show Association and NRHA Score a Plus with 2012 Partnership

Fairfield, Connecticut – April 2, 2012 – The Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) is proud to announce that the National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) embraced its role as official sponsor for the IHSA Western Semi-Finals, leading up to the 2012 IHSA National Championships, May 3-6, at the Hunt Horse Complex of the NC State Fairgrounds in Raleigh.

“The rapidly expanding support of the Western Semi-Finals by the NRHA has enabled our riders to enjoy a greatly enhanced program,” said IHSA national treasurer, Naomi Blumenthal, who also credited Ohio State University IHSA Western team coach and IHSA Associate National Steward/Director at Large, Ollie Griffith, with negotiating the agreement.  “We hope he knows how grateful everyone is for bringing NRHA into our corporate family.”

Continue reading Intercollegiate Horse Show Association and NRHA Score a Plus with 2012 Partnership