Are you looking for an equestrian career that’s much more than just “a job working with horses”? Want to experience incredible rewards while participating in a true revolution in equine training and welfare? Experience a new road to knowledge, and be one of the pioneers in bringing Positive Reinforcement Training (R+) to the traditional equestrian world. This physically active, indoor/outdoor apprenticeship for an equestrian professional will give you a valuable horse training education, with a goal to be able to teach others the concepts and skills of our Priority to Positive® program.

Full-time Entry Level hourly employee position at our 50-acre facility, Terra Nova Equestrian Training Center, Lamy, NM, located 20 minutes from the plaza in historic Santa Fe.

Qualifications :

  • *Committed to, or already pursuing, a professional career in horse training, coaching and teaching* This is a requirement for this apprenticeship position.
  • Extensive riding experience in a traditional equestrian discipline. Soft, competent rider – video and in-person assessment of riding skills will be part of evaluation for position.
  • High level of horsemanship. Prefer a candidate who has at least 2 years of experience grooming, riding and/or teaching for a professional barn; or a graduate of formal equestrian training equivalent to BHS or equestrian college degree. Because of the varied nature of the equestrian industry, we are open to other horsemanship backgrounds.
  • Along with equestrian job or teaching and educational experience, competition record a plus.
  • Ability to engage in relaxed and open manner with other equestrians
    • Friendly, excellent communication and interpersonal skills with co-workers and general public
    • Open-minded and non-judgmental regarding equestrian training methods
    • Eager to learn and practice new training concepts
    • Engaged and open in groups, interested in problem solving and helping others
    • Capable and eager to learn skills to give presentations and horse-training demos to large groups
    • Ability to maintain composure in stressful situations
  • Ability to fill a physically active, athletic position. Physical requirements:
    • Ability to stand, except at breaks, lift at least 35 lbs, and walk at least 5 miles/day
    • Ability to work indoors and outdoors in all weather conditions
    • Ability to groom, tack and ride at least 3 horses for 1hr walk, trot and canter exercise each, per day.
  • Excellent multi-tasking abilities
  • Basic math and competent reading and writing skills
  • At least 21 years of age
  • Driver’s license and personal transportation
  • Fluent English-speaker

Job description: Entry level – minimum 1 year contract

  • Focus is on learning how to train horses using Positive Reinforcement methods and our “Priority to Positive®” principles, being a training partner and taking on foundation training, assisting and teaching in apprentice role
  • Participate in our onboarding and classroom program as Apprentice PtP Trainer, show mastery of material and move up curriculum levels
  • Under direction, assume responsibility for one or more horses for exercise and management
  • Under direction, participate in Positive Reinforcement Training, and developing and executing Objectives and Key Results (OKR’s) for assigned horses 
  • Be a daily training partner for other PtP trainers, including taking video
  • Submit daily logs and other training and curriculum records as required
  • Video uploading and tagging
  • Participate in organizing, and assist in managing and teaching workshops and clinics, including working on weekend and holidays
  • Other tasks as assigned, including regular rotation for Night Check, small animal feeding, etc.
  • Occasional travel for workshops, clinics and shows, including weekends and holidays.
  • Occasionally produce approved social media content

Job ladder to:

  • Assistant PtP Trainer (able to teach others on behalf of Via Nova Training)
  • PtP Trainer and Coach (able to teach on your own)


  • Initial compensation based on equestrian skills and experience, and personality fit for position
  • Health Insurance
  • Worker’s Comp

Perks of Apprenticeship position:

  • Employee housing w/internet access on facility in 2bd/2bath house shared with one co-worker, if space is available. Unfortunately we cannot allow pets in this employee housing.
  • Free board for 1 horse, as long as permission is given to make use of that horse in the Via Nova Training program
  • Expenses paid for approved educational seminars, workshops, events and conferences related to horse training and competition, both remote and in-person.

To Apply: 

Please send resume and/or a complete description of all active equestrian background by date and location, including the identification of when significant riding experience began, horse ownership, amateur experience, previous trainers, coaches, previous participation in equestrian competition and/or programs such as Pony Club, BHS, and any other equestrian workshops, clinics and certifications to this email.  Please include contact information.