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Penn State’s Quarter Horse Sale Turns 20

Over the past 20 years, Penn State’s very own equine science program has been selling quarter horses as part of a marketing class. The sale will present 15 green-broke two-year-olds for sale, all bred by or donated to the Penn State program. 

This year’s auction will take place online from Saturday, April 30, through Tuesday, May 3. A preview and in-person showcase for the horse sale will also take place on April 30 at the Snider Agricultural Arena out past Beaver Stadium. In addition to the live showcase, the program will host a 20th-anniversary celebration and alumni reunion to mark the momentous occasion.

Across the 20 years that the quarter horse sale has run, more than 650 students have taken the class that runs it. A good number of those students later returned to serve as committee chairs and managers for the quarter horse sale. Students have become more and more involved in the sale over the years and are able to gain leadership and marketing experiences from the course.

The sale was first offered in 2002 by a livestock marketing class and wound up selling eight horses. As the class expanded, the group was able to partner with the State University of New York (SUNY) and breed some of its mares. A similar marketing class was started at SUNY to help prepare the horses for sale that were then shipped to State College and sold alongside Penn State’s until 2019.

Professor Brian Egan, who took over the class in 2003, explained that although this class isn’t a pure business course, several aspects of marketing and sales come into play with organizing the sale. Additionally, since social media has changed so much since the start of the program, students play a big part in advertising and promotion.

Due to COVID-19, the sale for 2020 and 2021 moved online through Pro Horse Services after being in person for over 15 years. Egan said that this caused the small sale to go from a regional to a national level. While the quarter horse sale has operated online, it’s gained more visibility for the equine science program.

For more information about the sale and Saturday’s event, visit the quarter horse sale’s website.

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About the Author

Evan Halfen

Evan Halfen is a junior broadcast journalism major from Newark, DE, and is one of Onward State's associate editors. Evan loves all things Penn State, tailgating, being loud, just about any beach, and his puppies, Butterscotch and Wentzy. You can direct all your tips, roasts, and jokes to his Instagram: @evan.halfen or email: [email protected]

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