If you are interested in college riding, here is some basic information on the National Collegiate Equestrian Association, or NCEA. These NCEA Fast Facts will give you an overview of what to expect as you explore NCEA programs.
Also, be sure to check out our blog post on the topic, “Prepare for Collegiate Riding.”
- The National Collegiate Equestrian Association is the governing body for the equestrian component of the NCAA (or National Collegiate Athletic Association). The NCAA sets forth rules originally designed to protect student-athletes from pressure from coaches as they decide their choice of school. They also set forth academic standards for student-athletes.
- Equestrian was introduced to the NCAA in 1998 and is considered an NCAA “Emerging Sport.” To be fully sanctioned by the NCAA, 40 schools must sponsor an NCEA program.
- As of 2019, there are 24 schools participating in the NCEA, and the program has enjoyed steady growth.
- High school or college students not yet in the NCEA (or NCAA) who have the potential to do so are called “Prospective Student Athletes,” or PSAs.
- A PSA who is interested in the NCEA should register with the NCAA Eligibility Center during her freshman or sophomore year of high school, even if the PSA has not contacted any colleges about their Equestrian programs. You can register at www.ncaaeligibilitycenter.com.
- As a PSA, you can contact a coach at any time by phone, text, email or social media. However, a coach cannot return any type of communication until June 15th following a prospects sophomore year of high school. So, if you reach out, be prepared for a lack of response due to those rules.
- Many teams, just like in other sports, require rider athletes are required to participate in team strength and conditioning sessions. Exact policies vary by program.
- Academics are also very important in NCEA. Most programs require freshmen to log study hours their first semester to make sure they are setting aside adequate time.
- In many athletic departments, there are also community service requirements.
- For equestrian student-athletes, there may also be stable chores, meetings, and fundraising events.
Colleges and Universities with NCEA Programs:
|AUBURN UNIVERSITY – Auburn, Ala.
Greg Williams, Head Coach | Jessica Braswell, Associate Head Coach | Mary Meneely, Assistant Coach | Morgan McQuay, Director of Operations
|BAYLOR UNIVERSITY – Waco, Texas
Casie Maxwell, Head Coach |Marlena Beckham, Assistant Coach | Laura Brainard, Assistant Coach
Ashley Garza, Director of Operations
|UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, DAVIS – Davis, California
Jessie Weisinger, Head Coach | Jill Humphrey, Assistant Coach
|BROWN UNIVERSITY – Providence, R.I.|
|COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON – Charleston, S.C.
Natasha McCarthy, Head Coach | Shannon O’Brien, Assistant Coach
|CORNELL UNIVERSITY – Ithaca, N.Y.|
|DELAWARE STATE UNIVERSITY – Dover, Del.
Jennifer Ridgely, Head Coach | Caroline Foltz Kane, Assistant Coach
|FRESNO STATE – Fresno, Calif.
Eric Hubbard, Head Coach | Caitlin Marshall, Assistant Coach | Mary Brown, Assistant Coach
|UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA – Athens, Ga.
Meghan Boenig, Head Coach | Anna Becker, Assistant Coach | Sara Parr, Assistant Coach
|OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSITY – Stillwater, Okla.
Larry Sanchez, Head Coach | Sammy Elser, Assistant Coach |
Jenna Blumer, Assistant Coach | Kate Chelsey, Director of Operations
|SACRED HEART UNIVERSITY – Fairfield, Conn.
Tiffany Hajdasz, Head Coach
|UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA – Columbia, S.C.
Boo Major, Head Coach | Ruth Sorrel, Associate Head Coach | Kristen Terebesi, Assistant Coach
|SOUTH DAKOTA STATE UNIVERSITY – Brookings, S.D.
Ellie Wilkins, Head Coach | Morgan DiGiulio, Assistant Coach
|SOUTHERN METHODIST UNIVERSITY – Dallas, Texas
Carol Gwin, Head Coach | McKenzie Lantz, Associate Head Coach | Amber Henter, Assistant Coach
|TEXAS CHRISTIAN UNIVERSITY – Fort Worth, Texas
Haley Schoolfield, Director of Equestrian
Logan Fiorentino, Hunt Seat Head Coach | Melissa Dukes, Western Head Coach
|TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY – College Station, Texas
Tana McKay, Head Coach | Abby O’Mara, Assistant Coach | Suzy Jeane, Assistant Coach
Kimmy Saul, Director of Operations
|UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE-MARTIN – Martin, Tenn.
Meghan Cunningham, Head Coach | Kim Leiter, Assistant Coach
|LIU Post – Brookville, N.Y.
Brooke Chasin, Head Coach
|SETON HILL UNIVERSITY – Greensburg, Pa.
Rebecca Bloom, Head Coach | Taylor Janson, Assistant Coach
|STONEHILL COLLEGE – North Easton, Mass.|
|UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA CROOKSTON – Crookston, Minn.|
|WEST TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY – Canyon, Texas|