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Therapeutic riding center gets accredited

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A program that provides equine therapy to children and adults with special needs recently received special recognition from an international organization.

The Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH International) accredited the Mississippi State University Extension Service’s Elizabeth A. Howard 4-H Therapeutic Riding and Activity Center (TRAC).

Julie Parker, assistant professor in the MSU School of Human Sciences, said the accreditation process is a rigorous and comprehensive program review. The accreditation indicates the TRAC uses best practices as a therapeutic riding program.

Parker said the center’s ultimate goal is to help MSU Extension Service’s 4-H program develop therapeutic riding programs in more communities throughout Mississippi. The PATH, International accreditation will allow TRAC to reach more people.

“We are delighted to have received our accreditation and very proud of our staff,” Parker said. “4-H Extension associate Cassie Brunson and the staff worked very hard over the last year to design programming and upgrade the physical facility to meet all the accreditation requirements. We’re excited about extending our programming to other populations and training individuals throughout our state to provide therapeutic riding services.”

The center is an academic, therapeutic riding program. It offers therapeutic riding and activities for children and adults with various physical and cognitive challenges. Additionally, the center plans to introduce a post-traumatic stress disorder program for veterans and trauma victims in the community.


Writer: Kaitlyn Byrne

Released: June 6, 2014
Contact: Dr. Julie Parker, 662-325-0828