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Meet the Summer 2017 APHA interns

APHA is known for stellar interns who go on to big careers in and out of the equine industry, and this summer’s crop is no exception. Let us introduce these bright minds, and make sure to say hello to them at the AjPHA Youth World Championship Show, which takes place June 26–July 8 in Fort Worth, Texas.

Mary Huddleston

Hailing from Farmville, Virginia, Mary Huddleston is the summer 2017 publications intern. She will graduate from Virginia Tech University in December with a degree in public relations and equine science. Following graduation, Mary plans to attend law school or graduate school. She grew up showing Western pleasure and hunter under saddle, as well as showing a warmblood on the hunter/jumper circuit.

While attending college, Mary’s taken a break from showing to devote more time to her studies. Recently, however, she has taken up roping and is loving it! With seven horses on her family’s farm, Mary is ready to take on anything.

“Horses have always consumed my life, especially since I have picked up another discipline that is quite challenging. School consumes the rest of my time, but I enjoy it because I love learning,” Mary said. “I love horses, Texas and writing, so the APHA publications internship called my name.”

Marguerite Camp

Marguerite Camp of Longview, Texas, joins the APHA team as a Performance Department intern. She attends Texas A&M University, where she is studying agricultural business and financial planning; she will graduate in May 2018. Marguerite is no stranger to APHA and has been showing since she was a Youth. Her family still owns APHA world champion Radicalized. Marguerite showed “Rodney” during her last two years as a Youth; now, her younger sister, Mary Katherine, shows him in 14–18 all-around events. While Marguerite dearly misses showing with Rodney, she credits her 13 & Under horse, Barlnk Double Tuff with igniting her passion for showing horses.

“Riding ‘Deiter’ gave me confidence in my riding skills, and he helped me to attain my first world title. Deiter taught me what it meant to work hard for what you want, and I learned lessons with him that I still use today when preparing to show,” Marguerite said. “The passion that I have to become better every day was first fueled in my time riding and competing with Deiter.”

That passion led Marguerite to her APHA internship.

“I have grown up showing horses with APHA since Walk-Trot. The impact that showing has had on my life has been monumental, and I wanted the opportunity to get an inside look at what it takes to make APHA and the World Show a success each year. I enjoy interacting with competitors and the Youth of APHA who love showing horses as much as I do. I hope that I can help to make the 2017 World Show fun for everyone!’”

Melissa Tench

Melissa Tench also joins APHA as a Performance Department intern. Originally from Vero Beach, Florida, she is an undergraduate student at the University of Florida in Gainesville. Melissa is currently earning a double major in animal sciences with an equine specialization and business management; she will graduate this December. This past year, Melissa was the captain of her school’s Western equestrian team and ended the season as a regional high-point rider. She was also a member of the university’s horse judging team, earning third overall individual at AQHA World Show competition in 2016. Last semester, she was an assistant coach for the horse judging team.

Melissa has a special spot in her heart for her two Paints: Lenas Lies N Abilities and TMF Barlinks Angel. “Piper” came to Melissa with only 60 days of training; she credits the mare with making her the rider she is today and says every victory they shared was worth it in the end. “Freckles” was Melissa’s first horse and was the perfect one to teach Melissa about showing, due to her gentle demeanor. Freckles is now a lesson and trail horse for Melissa’s mom.

“I competed with both of my Paints mostly at Florida Paint Horse Club shows throughout high school. I completely fell in love with APHA and showing because of my state club. After researching the performance internship, I knew it was the perfect combination of both of my majors, making it my top choice for my summer internship,” Melissa said.

APHA regularly offers internship opportunities for college-age students in various departments; to learn more about these opportunities, email jmitchell@apha.com.


[Reprinting all or part of this news release is permitted, so long as credit is given to the Paint Horse Journal and a link provided back to apha.com.]


About APHA

The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded. APHA creates and maintains programs that increase the value of American Paint Horses and enriches members’ experiences with their horses.