2018 Horse Barn Coop Students at the MRC on the lawn

A hands-on educational opportunity

The UVM Cooperative Horse Barn is an educational facility in which students have the opportunity to learn skills such as equine management, teamwork and leadership while bringing their horse with them to college.

Membership in the UVM Horse Barn requires a large time commitment as well as a willingness to work with others to achieve the common goal of running the facility in  conjunction with the UVM educational mission. Members of the UVM Horse Barn pay a decreased boarding fee and are responsible for the care of their own horse as well as additional chores and time spent at the barn completing horse watch duties and attending meetings. Students are also largely involved in the management and decision-making processes within the Horse Barn.

Upcoming Events:

Fall 2019:

October 5th: Coop Open Barn (as part of Alumni weekend): 10:30-12:30 

           Live Demos and Informational Posters, Free shuttle running in a loop with pick up at the Davis Center. 

October 12th-13th: UVM Dressage Team Home Show Double Header

October 28th: Halloween Barn: 5:30-7:00pm

           $3 Suggested donation, Parking at Gutterson with a shuttle ride

NEW: UVM Horse Barn Video Tour

UVM Horse Barn and pastures from Spear Street

  • UVM Horse Barn is accepting applications

    The UVM Horse Barn is now accepting applications! We encourage you to submit your application for Fall semester by April 1st and Spring semester when there is availability by November 15th.

    If you have any questions throughout the application process, please reach out to us at horsebarn@uvm.edu. We are looking forward to hearing from you!

Guidelines for Acceptance

The following are the guidelines that the UVM Horse Barn Executive Committee uses to determine the acceptance of students and horses into the UVM Horse Barn Cooperative:

  • A completed checklist found on the last page of the application to the horse barn (recommendations, pictures, proof of rabies and negative Coggins, written essay, optional-short video)
  • Past horse experience
  • Demonstration of the ability to work well with others, cooperate, and provide positive group interaction skills
  • Demonstration of reliability, responsibility, maturity, and a positive attitude
  • Adequate availability required (weekends, nights, and school breaks)
  • Availability is determined by academic major and work schedules
  • Our general rule is that as a UVM student your first priority is academic schedules and requirements, and of course, family responsibilities and emergencies will always have precedence over barn obligations.  When it comes to the second priority, work schedules will not be accepted as an excuse to miss pre-planned barn activities and meetings.
  • A safe horse in all respects (please refer to the questions on the application).  We are looking for horses that anyone can work with regardless of their horse experience and that will be safe and sane with all visitors and situations.
  • We realize that no horse or human is perfect; we are just looking to find the safest and most responsible pair that will fit into our horse barn community.

Barn Member Responsibilities

The UVM Horse Barn is a cooperative barn for UVM students.  The barn consists of 22 stalls, a heated tack-room with built in tack boxes, a hay loft for storage of extra equipment, a wash stall with hot and cold water, a fenced indoor riding arena approximately 72' x 168' rubber and sand footing, a fenced 100' x 200' outdoor sand riding ring, and white-rope electric fence turnout paddocks for turnout.

The UVM Horse Barn, CREAM Barn and the UVM Barns all embody the UVM Farm.  Some Animal and Veterinary Sciences classes and labs are held in the classroom at the barn.  Everyone will be expected to behave in an appropriate manner consistent with an educational facility.  Please note that the UVM Farm is open to the public 9:00am-4:30pm daily.

Members of the UVM Horse Barn are expected to do the following:

  • Take complete care of their horses (i.e. muck out stalls, set up grain, and clean and refill water buckets) daily, or find a responsible person to do it when they are unable to come to the barn. (Morning feeder is provided.)
  • Do general barn chores, which are shared on a rotating basis.  These chores include turning out the horses, sweeping the aisles, throwing hay, cleaning the tack room and bathroom, and bringing in the horses.
  • Sign up for a minimum of three horse watch hours per week. A barn member must be present when horses are out.
  • Attend all barn meetings on Monday evenings starting at 4:45pm. Work is not an acceptable excuse for missing barn meetings.
  • Come to barn events during the fall and spring semesters. There are usually one to two events each semester, and they are almost always on the weekends.
  • Sign up for "night check" every week with a partner.
  • Sign up for “weekend watches” throughout the semester.  Usually two per semester, weekend watches consist of four hour blocks of horse watch on either Saturday or Sunday.
  • Sign up to cover horse watch over school vacations, including Thanksgiving, winter, and spring breaks.
  • Sign up for ASCI 021, “Horse Barn Co-operative” for each semester in the barn.
  • Have fun and enjoy your fellow barn members and horses!

Normal Daily Scenarios for Horse Barn Members

  • All barn members are expected to clean their stalls, set up their horse's feed, and change their water every day.  If you do not ride, expect to spend about one hour a day here (not including horse watch or other responsibilities).  If you do ride, expect to spend about two to three hours at the barn.
  • In addition to regular chores, a barn member is responsible for three hours of horse watch every week. Horse watch hours are between 9am and 5pm Monday through Friday. Chores include turning out and bringing in horses, cleaning the barn, providing water, and observing the horses. Members are also responsible for weekend duties, which include two four-hour horse watch shifts every semester and two one-hour turnout or bring-in shifts every semester.
  • A member of the Horse Barn Executive Committee feeds every morning between 7 and 8am. Barn members on the 4pm horse watch hour will feed in the late afternoon. Feeders provide the horses with hay, grain and owner-requested supplements.
  • Every night, two members come to the barn between the hours of 9 and 11pm to give the horses hay and fresh water. Each pair chooses a night of the week to do night check. This takes about a half hour.
  • There are several barn events during the academic year, including Homecoming Weekend, Halloween Barn, and a Spring Events (March/April). These events are organized by barn members and are mandatory for all members.

What's it like to be a member of the UVM Horse Barn? One student's perspective:

"I am a freshman at the University of Vermont, and I am an Animal and Veterinary Sciences student focusing on Pre-veterinary Medicine.  I am taking 18 credits right now during my second semester here.  These credits include general chemistry with a lab, pre-calculus, English, psychology 001, and my college's information technology course. I'm also registered for one credit of Horse Barn Cooperative. Oh did I mention that I have a horse in the barn? So as a pre-vet freshman, I have learned time management. Usually, I have to plan my time very wisely at the barn. I have planned my horse watch to be in one three-hour block so I only have it once a week, and I have a few days a week planned that I have time to ride. On days that I do not have a lot of time, I come to the barn, do my stall, clean my water buckets, and fill my grain buckets. I then make sure that all my chores are done for the day before I go in the tack room to get ready to go to class or back to the dorm. I usually chat for a minute or two with my friends, and then its off I go. When I get to ride, I try to do all my chores first so they are out of the way. If I am around at 4 p.m., I try to help out with bring in and feeding. I have to admit that it’s a huge time commitment to have my horse here, more so than I expected, but it is completely worth it."

UVM Horse Barn Facilities

The Ellen A. Hardacre Equine Center is a wonderful facility for barn members to enjoy.  It consists of the following:

  • Twenty-two 10’ x 12’ horse stalls
  • Heated tack room with built in tack boxes, a microwave, a refrigerator, hot and cold water, wireless access, and a stereo system set up for the entire barn and arena
  • Overhead hayloft for storage of tack trunks
  • Wash stall with hot and cold water
  • Heated utilities room
  • Grain room
  • 72’ x 168’ indoorrubber and sand arena

The outdoor facility includes the following:

  • 100’ x 200’ PVC fenced outdoor sand arena
  • White rope electric fence paddocks for turnout

Directions / Address / Hours : UVM Horse Barn

Paul Miller Research Complex Map

Street Address:

500 Spear Street
South Burlington, VT 05403


From I-89/Williston Road:  Take Exit 14W into Burlington. Head west on Williston Road; merge into right-most lane to take jughandle exit to Spear Street. Head south on Spear Street past athletics complexes and fields; research complex will be about one-quarter mile on your left.


10:00am-4:00pm week days

For more information contact:




Looking for more Equine related things happening at or through UVM?

You might also be interested in these:

UVM Dressage Team

UVM Equestrian Team

Student on her horse in a competition

Please Read these two documents prior to submitting an application:

PDF icon Horse Barn Constitution (PDF)

PDF icon Horse Barn Code of Conduct (PDF)

PDF icon Risk and Release Form (PDF)(Required if chosen)

Co-op Application


A Co-Op Annual Tradition: Halloween Barn