The Thoroughbred Education & Research Foundation (TERF) partners with Horsemen U to promote continuing education for Thoroughbred trainers and assistant trainers. TERF provides an annual grant of $4,000 to the Horsemen U project, which covers the cost of the website for the full year.

Horsemen U is a collaboration of the national Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association and the California Thoroughbred Trainers. The platform was launched in 2021 to assist trainers and assistant trainers in complying with continuing education requirements, which have been adopted by HISA. The website offers CE seminars, covering topics from “Diagnostic Imaging” and “Biosecurity” to the “Musculoskeletal System of the Racehorse” and “Equine Welfare, Horseracing, and the Social License to Operate,” and also hosts live webinars.

TERF, an offshoot of Thoroughbred Charities of America, was established in 2012 to provide focused funding for equine education and research and supports education and research organizations in the Mid-Atlantic region.

The objectives of TERF and Horsemen U dovetail seamlessly. Dr. Jim Orsini, one of the founders and a Trustee of TERF, said, “Education is the best investment for improving the lives of trainers, assistant trainers, and others in the equine industry. High quality education of equine industry personnel results in improved health and welfare of the horse. Additionally, individuals that complete courses offered by Horsemen U can educate others by mentoring and serving as a role model to create a multiplier effect.”

Dr. Scott Palmer, Equine Medical Director for the New York State Gaming Commission and also a TERF Trustee, spearheaded the first-ever CE regulation for Thoroughbred racing in 2017.

“TERF’s mission aligns with several of the primary goals of Horsemen U – education, Thoroughbred horses, safety, health and welfare,” Palmer said. “We couldn’t be better connected in our mutual goal to support the Thoroughbred racing industry through education of individuals primarily responsible for the care of Thoroughbred horses.

“By supporting the education of current and future generations of horse care professionals, TERF not only directly enhances the ability of industry stakeholders to improve the health and welfare of the horses in their care, but also provides an opportunity for the Thoroughbred industry to demonstrate its commitment to equine welfare to the general public,” he added.

THA Chairman Alan Foreman applauded the partnership between Horsemen U and TERF. “Horsemen U was born of the efforts of the Mid-Atlantic stakeholders involved in the Strategic Plan to Reduce Equine Fatalities,” Foreman said. “We have state regulators, racetrack management and horsemen’s groups working together to improve the safety of our sport, and continuing education is an important component of the Plan. Joining forces with TERF will strengthen our initiative and help to ensure that our horsemen have the tools they need to provide the best care possible for the horses.”

TERF has distributed more than $1 million in grants since its inception. The organization relies on the support of generous donors to continue its mission of promoting Thoroughbred health and welfare by funding scholarships, educational programs, and equine research with a priority to make racing safer. Tax-deductible contributions can be made by mailing a check made payable to ‘Thoroughbred Education and Research Foundation’ to: Thoroughbred Education and Research Foundation (TERF) c/o CCCF, 28 West Market Street, West Chester, PA 19382, or by visiting the TERF donation page at www.terfusa.org/donate/.

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