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Morrisville State College Students Behind Successful Yearling Sale

MORRISVILLE, N.Y.—Janine Weyls traveled a long way to learn more about breeding horses.

The Pennsylvania native, enrolled in Morrisville State College's equine science bachelor of technology program, is one of more than 200 students who gained an even greater breadth of knowledge of the equine industry working the Morrisville State College Equine Institute’s annual yearling sale Sept. 24.

The yearling sale, which features year-old standardbred horses sold on consignment by the college, is organized and run by Morrisville State College Equine Department faculty, staff and students.

This year’s eighteenth sale brought in approximately $1.7 million. A total of 172 yearlings were sold for an average of $9,784, up from last year’s $9,760 average for 219 yearlings. Eleven yearlings consigned by the Morrisville State College Equine Institute were sold, totaling $171,300 for an average of $15,573. Among them were offspring of internationally known harness trotter, Conway Hall, sire of the 2004 Hambletonian and trotting Triple Crown winner, Windsong’s Legacy. Conway Hall stands at stud at Morrisville State College under the management of Walnut Hall Ltd. Conway Hall’s offspring had the highest average sale price from one stallion, a $24,500 average for four yearlings.

A unique aspect of the college’s annual sale is the experience equine students gain being a part of it.

Weyls knows the hands-on experience she is gaining at Morrisville State College will play a vital role in her future plans to work on a breeding farm.

“I researched and searched the Internet and wanted to learn from the best,” said the third-year student about her journey to Morrisville. “I came here because I heard Morrisville had the best breeding program.”

During the sale, students participate in a multitude of activities from bedding stalls, grooming, leading and showing horses, to setting up the business office and assisting with cleanup.

“It is great experience working the sale,” Weyls said. “We gain hands-on experience doing everything to prepare the horses while also learning what people in the industry want. We also make contacts that will be essential to our careers.”

The sale is a major industry-based entrepreneurial activity for Morrisville’s equine programs as well as a vehicle to showcase the campus.

More than 1,000 people from all over the Northeastern United States, Florida and Canada attended the sale, which is the largest of its kind in New York state.

Lauren and Bob Tucker, owners of Stonegate Standardbred Farms, Inc., traveled from New Jersey to sell five of their yearlings in the sale.

Three Morrisville State College students were assisting them with their yearlings.

“This sale is a great set-up, well organized and we think it is wonderful that students are involved and gaining hands-on experience and course credit working the sale,” Lauren Tucker said.

Milton Ebersole, of Central Square, N.Y., had the day off from work and came to watch the sale, which has a national reputation.

Ebersole donated two thoroughbred horses (which were not part of the sale) to Morrisville State College.

“I donated them so the college could learn and progress,” he said. “I think it is marvelous that the college supports an industry that is teaching students to become professional horse people.”

Profits from the sale go toward general maintenance and enrichment of the college’s equine programs.

Morrisville State College offers a bachelor of technology degree in equine science and two associate degrees in equine racing management and equine and science management. An Equine Breeding and Training Center, a 34,000 square-foot breeding and hunter/jumper facility, includes a breeding and foaling barn, hunter/jumper barn, stallion barn, a complete breeding laboratory, collection area, laptop classroom and three indoor riding arenas.

In addition to the Equine Breeding and Training Center, the college has an 80-acre Equine Center complete with paddocks, stables, and the only half-mile harness racing track on a college campus in the nation. Additional stables include a draft horse barn with a covered round pen and runouts.

Morrisville State College offers more than 75 bachelor and associate degrees and options with eight new degrees being offered this fall: entrepreneurship and small business management, B.B.A.; nursing, B.S.; science, technology, and society, B.S.; journalism and online communication, B.S.; horticulture business management, B.T.; human performance and health promotion, B.S.; criminal justice, A.A.S. (Norwich Campus only); and human services, A.A.S. (Norwich Campus only).

Considered to be one of the most technologically advanced colleges in the nation for its ThinkPad University program and wireless technology initiative, the college recently became the first in the nation to comprehensively replace landlines in residence halls with individual cellular phones. Morrisville State College was also chosen as one of the top five colleges in the nation for campus activities by Campus Activities magazine.

The Morrisville State College Norwich Campus offers associate degree programs in accounting, business, computer systems technology, office administration, liberal arts transfer, nursing, early childhood, criminal justice and human services to south central New York residents and employers. Students may also apply coursework to other associate or bachelor degrees at the main campus.