Strides for Equality Equestrians and the U.S. Eventing Association Foundation are accepting applications for the winter 2022 round of the bi-annual Ever So Sweet scholarship. The application deadline is October 15.
The two-month scholarship will begin in January, allowing the recipient to train with Sara Kozumplik Murphy and Brian Murphy in Ocala, Florida. The scholarship will cover expenses for full board and training costs for the horse, several lessons per week, housing for the rider, a stipend to cover living expenses, competition fees, and coaching at competitions. The purpose of the scholarship is to provide education, experience and networking opportunities for diverse young people interested in careers in competitive horse sports, particularly in the disciplines of eventing or show jumping.
The Ever So Sweet scholarship, which began in 2021, is intended as a step toward increasing diversity and inclusion in equestrian sports.
“Our family loves horses and the sport of eventing,” said Edy Rameika, who cosponsors the scholarship with the Murphys. “My daughters, Roxanne and Nadine, began riding when they were quite young. They rode and competed through high school, and Roxanne continued into her college career. We are very fortunate. But there are students in underserved communities who have the passion and talent for the sport but perhaps not the means. Roxanne passed away in 2017 but her passion lives on through her family. Nadine, Sara, and I want to honor Roxanne and Nadine’s Native American heritage and their love of eventing through this scholarship in the hopes of helping to keep others’ dreams alive. Ever So Sweet is a song that was beloved to Roxanne and Nadine, especially during those memorable years of riding.”
The first ESS scholarship winner, Helen Casteel of Silver Spring, Maryland, recently finished her time at Overlook Farm, the Murphys’ Berryville, Virginia, summer base.
“It’s been great from start to finish. … It’s almost a new beginning for my riding,” said Casteel, who competed in several jumper shows and USEA-recognized events, and had the opportunity to ride and compete one of Sara’s horses when her own sustained an injury. She encouraged others to apply and to go into the opportunity with an open mind, ready to learn new approaches to riding and horse care.
Please review the full description and application on SEE’s website to determine if this opportunity is right for you or someone you know. Strides for Equality Equestrians welcomes inquiries for more information about the scholarship and/or application process. The scholarship is offered twice annually for winter and summer sessions. Applicants who are not selected are eligible to reapply to future rounds.