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UMW equine student finishes Brazil internship

UMW News Bureau

Kindle McCauley on horseback

Raised on a ranch in Boulder, Mont., Kindle McCauley grew up around horses. Last summer, the 22-year old University of Montana Western senior found herself working with horses on the other side of the equator.

As part of her education, McCauley spent one month outside of Santana de Deserto in Minas Gerais, Brazil for her internship at the Haras Capim Fino stud farm.

McCauley’s connection to Brazil began with her grandparents, who worked for the Smith Ranch outside of Boulder. The McCauley and Smith ranch partnership spans three generations, and Kindle began working for Tresa Smith in 2002. Tresa Smith is known for introducing the exotic Brazilian horse breed Mangalarga Marchador to Montana.

When McCauley told Smith about her requirement for an internship to graduate, Smith suggested traveling to Brazil to work at Haras Capim Fino. Smith funded the entire internship for McCauley.

McCauley arrived in Minas Gerais on May 5, 2012. After settling in to her accommodations at the stud farm, she began her internship work. Her work included exercising and training the horses, and as part of this work she rode the ranch’s top stallions, show horses and colts. Through her work in Brazil, McCauley is now listed as a trainer for Mangalarga Marchadors in the United States.

"What I learned in the classroom allowed me to converse with other trainers on a professional level, scholar to scholar. I wouldn’t have had this opportunity without the things I learned here.”

In addition to learning about the ranch’s horses, McCauley said the experience taught her much more.

“I learned a lot about respect and honesty,” McCauley said. “Despite the language barriers, my hosts were very personable and hospitable.”

McCauley will graduate in May 2013 with a Bachelor of Science in Natural Horsemanship with an option in Management. After graduation, she plans to pursue a career in ranching. She would like to continue working with horses, including the Mangalarga Marchador.

Montana Western is the only university in the nation to offer a four-year degree in natural horsemanship. McCauley said her education at UMW proved to be incredibly valuable in pursuing the unique internship.

“Before I came to Montana Western, I was just an old cowpoke,” McCauley joked. “But now, I am a horsewoman. What I learned in the classroom allowed me to converse with other trainers on a professional level, scholar to scholar. I wouldn’t have had this opportunity without the things I learned here.”