Megan Schmidt gets scholarship through program formed by horseman Buck Brannaman
DAYTON--Megan Schmidt, a senior at Dayton High School, has received an "A Legacy of Legends" scholarship to study "natural horsemanship" with people who studied under Ray Hunt and Tom Dorrance. Hunt and Dorrance are considered to be the "greatest and most influential horsemen, of all time", according to the "A Legacy of Legends" website.
Megan saw a post on Facebook about the scholarship a couple of months ago and, after going back and forth in her mind, decided she would apply, according to her mother Virginia Schmidt.
"We said, do it. Go for it," said Virginia.
The Schmidt family left for the seventh annual gathering at the Will Rogers Event Center in Fort Worth, Tex. on March 1, to be on hand for the scholarship announcements, Schmidt said.
Megan was one of twelve candidates selected from a field of 47 applicants, her mother said.
Virginia said that when Megan's name was announced, "She jumped up and screamed. There were a few little tears of joy."
"I'm kinda blown away," said Megan. "I didn't feel I would get it until later in life."
Megan said she hopes this scholarship will be a springboard to a career as a horse clinician. "She has always enjoyed working with horses," said Virginia. "She is looking forward to working with some experienced horsemen."
"We'll know more about it in a couple of weeks. All the mentors choose which student they want as their apprentice. She could go as far away as Colorado, Wyoming, or Texas, wherever they are," Virginia said.
Before the term "horse whispering" became fashionable, Hunt and Dorrance showed the world how to train horses compassionately, instead of "breaking" horses in, through brute force.
"A Legacy of Legends" was formed by famed horseman Buck Brannaman and Hunt's widow, Carolyn, to keep compassionate horsemanship alive after Tom Dorrance, and Ray Hunt died.