2021 Virtual Conference

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The PATH Intl. Virtual Conference is a gathering of ideas, minds and hearts. Instructors, therapists, researchers, administrators, volunteers, dreamers, makers, movers-and-shakers. It has grown over the last four years to one of the association’s most anticipated equine-assisted services (EAS) focused events.

If you have not yet experienced the virtual conference, it is the perfect opportunity to share, collaborate and gather with a global audience of EAS professionals from the comfort of your home office. Whether you are new to PATH Intl. or consider yourself a seasoned professional, the 2021 virtual conference will engage, energize and offer practical skills and guidance to support the rigorous requirements of being an EAS professional. This conference is more than two days of learning, it is an opportunity for you to join us May 13th & 14th to connect with a team that will help you move mountains!

This online event will include 10 education sessions with live Q&A opportunities.

2021 Conference

May 13-14
9 a.m. to 3 p.m.


Individual Non-Member: $299
Member Discounted Price: $199

Center Pricing

PATH Intl. Member Center (unlimited viewing; CEUs may be redeemed by 3 people): $450

Presenters & Sessions

(will be updated as more information is available, including schedule)

Jo Anne Miller
Executive Director of Brook Hill Farm, VA
Title: Schooling with Horses
1hr CE

Presentation Description:
Did you know you could teach math and English on horseback? So many teens are not in school and are struggling with academics due to the pandemic. Brook Hill Farm has a pandemic pod school for low-income at-risk youth that provides the center with a sustainable revenue stream supported by the community. The farm has a 100% graduation rate of their students, and it is because of the experiential learning with horses that this program is so successful!

Presenter Bio:
During Brook Hill’s early years, Jo Anne was amazed at how these rescue horses healed with the help of staff, volunteers and youth. The horses were able to go on and lead productive lives, and the children involved grew into strong, confident, caring adults. Combining rescue and therapeutic riding created a win-win situation for both horses and people. In 2011, Jo Anne joined with PATH International and became a Registered Riding Instructor and an Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning, allowing Brook Hill to grow its educational and therapeutic programs.  Jo Anne has spoken at many national and international industry conferences and provided webinars in both Equine Welfare and Equine Assisted Therapies. She has spoken at the Homes for Horses Coalition Conference, and has presented her research at the International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organizations conference, the Horses in Therapy and Education in Dublin, Ireland, and at PATH International regional and international conferences. She has also served on many national committees, including the Equine Welfare Committee for PATH International, serves on the Virginia Horse Industry Board, the EQUUS committee for equine welfare, and co-founded the Virginia Alliance for Equine Rescue Organizations. Today, in keeping with the farm’s mission of education, Jo Anne is an adjunct professor of equine science at Randolph College, serves on the Virginia Tech Equine Education Advisory Board, and the Virginia Horse Central District Horse Council. In her spare time she coaches the Brook Hill Farm show jumping team!

Aviva Vincent, PhD
Title: Understanding Animal Collaborations: “Is That a Service Animal or a…?”
1hr CE

Presentation Description:
This conversation serves as a primer of the various roles animals play in our lives for comfort, emotional support, and service. Terminology used to explain the various roles will be unpacked, including the state/national policies and laws that apply to the various roles. Specifically, companion, emotional support, therapy, and service animals will be discussed along with guidelines for organizational requirements, advocacy, and supporting clients. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss any challenges or situations.

Aviva Vincent, PhD is a graduate of the Mandel School. Her background in veterinary social work informs her practice as the Director of Program Quality at Fieldstone Farm Therapeutic Riding Center in Chagrin Falls, Ohio. She is an instructor of macro coursework at Case Western Reserve University, and teaches in the University of Tennessee in the Veterinary Social Work Certificate Program. Aviva's research focuses on the physiological impact that animals have on individuals, specifically in the

PATH International Equine Services for Heroes Committee
Title: Support our Centers - Panel With: Equine Services 4 Heroes
1hr CE

The PATH International Equine Services for Heroes Committee will come together and answer frequently asked questions that have been received from membership.

Linda Douglas
New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence - New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence
Title: Domestic Violence Dynamics and Trauma
1hr CE

This presentation will discuss the dynamics of domestic violence including power and control, why someone may be unable to leave the relationship, and an overview of some of the underlying causes. In addition, the presenter will provide an overview of the short and long term traumatic impacts that occur when a person is being abused by their intimate partner. At the end of this presentation, attendees will hopefully have a better understanding of intimate partner violence and will reach out to their local domestic violence programs for more information.

Kristin McGraw
Title: Imagine the Possibilities!
1hr CE 

Presentation Description:
In today's ever-changing world, are you find it challenging to meet the needs of the community? Have you ever considered adding an unmounted program to the list of services you provide to help fill gaps? Do you already provide unmounted programs and are looking to expand or add to your toolbox? Join me as I share the trials, tribulations, and how we found success in meeting community needs and organizational sustainability through unmounted programming.

Kristen McGraw credentials include PATH Intl. CTRI, Level II Therapeutic Driving Instructor, Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning and EAGALA Equine Specialist. She served as the PATH Intl. New Hampshire State Chair from 2003-2006, Region 1 Rep from 2006-2010 & 2016-2018 and currently is the PATH Intl. Membership Outreach Committee Chair. She also served as a Driving Committee member from 2007-2011. In 2010, she graduated from the Leadership Series through the NH Institute on Disabilities. Kristen was appointed to sit on the NH Developmental Disabilities Council in Oct. 2011 and served as the Chair of the Council from 2012-2016. In 2012, Kristen received the PATH Intl. Certified Professional of the Year Award for Region 1. Currently, she oversees all of UpReach’s unmounted programs. 

Dr. Emily Kieson & Christie Schulte-Kappert
Title: Equine Welfare in PATH Intl.: Developments in Equine Welfare in Equine-Assisted Services and the Role of the PATH Intl. Equine Welfare Committee
1hr CE

Presentation Description:
Research has grown exponentially in recent years with developments in both physical and psychological welfare for all animals. With a greater understanding of the fundamental principles of welfare and their application to equine-assisted services (EAS), therapies utilizing partnerships with horses in treatment strategies, and equine-assisted learning programs (EAL), we can better understand how to provide the best possible conditions in which our horses can live, work and play. This presentation covers recent discussions in the application of welfare to the EAS industry from the International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organizations (IAHAIO), updated research in animal welfare including the five freedoms and five domains, and the role of the Equine Welfare Committee at PATH Intl. This presentation is created with the intention of moving facilities forward in incorporating new welfare concepts into new and existing programs.

Presenter Bios:
Emily Kieson
currently serves as Chair of the PATH Intl. Equine Welfare Committee and as Research Director and educator at MiMer Centre, a Swedish-based nonprofit focused on education and research in equine-human interactions and horse welfare. Her research focuses on equine behavioral psychology, equine welfare, and horse-human interactions as they apply to both horse owners and EAS programs. She holds a PhD in Comparative Psychology, a MS in Psychology, and a graduate degree in Equine Science. Her current research focuses involve looking at equine affiliative behaviors to study how horses create and maintain social bonds and how those can overlap with human affiliative behaviors to create authentic lasting friendships between horses and humans that can improve welfare in both horse and human. She is a PATH Intl. Certified ESMHL and has worked as a therapeutic riding instructor in the past. In addition to her research and work on the committee and with MiMer, Emily also develops and teaches courses at various colleges and universities in areas of human and animal behavioral psychology.

Christie Schulte Kappert, ASPCA Program Director, The Right Horse Initiative
Christie serves as program director for The ASPCA’s Right Horse Initiative, which seeks to make lasting, transformative improvements to equine welfare in the United States by massively increasing equine adoption. Christie is a skilled program and marketing manager with experience assembling equine industry partners to collaborate on complex industry-wide issues. Prior to joining the ASPCA and The Right Horse, she led marketing and partner development for the American Horse Council’s Time to Ride Initiative and has held other roles in marketing, event production and management in the horse industry. Christie is the proud adopter of two Mustangs, one burro and a pony mule. She competes in ranch horse versatility events with her AQHA mare and has been a top-ten finalist at two Extreme Mustang Makeovers. She and her husband raise a small herd of beef cattle along with a menagerie of other animals near Austin, TX.


What attendees of past virtual conferences had to say:
"I am not able to attend national conferences very often, or at all, so this was a great resource and help in allowing me to get some CEUs. The networking was also amazing."

"Thank you for the flexibility of watching the presentations later, we had lessons and could not watch it live. I look forward to more virtual conferences!"

"Overall, I was impressed with how well organized and smoothly everything ran. I feel much more connected to the organization now than ever."





equisure headercrop

Therapeutic RidingTherapeutic DrivingInteractive VaultingEquine Services for Heroes

Additional Sponsors

EQUUS FoundationMarkel Insurance CompanyCavalloRIDE TV