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Maryal and Charlie Barnett Continuing Education Grants for Dressage Instructors

Individuals may apply for grants ranging from $1,000 - $1,500 to attend the USDF Instructor/Trainer Program workshops, pre-certification, and/or testing. Funding is available from TDF to provide up to six individual grants annually. 

The online application form and all required documents must be submitted on or before the application deadline date of February 1 or July 1.  The grant must be used for a USDF Instructor/Trainer Program that falls after the application due date and within 2 years of that date. 

Additional Grant Information:

  • Applicant must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident.
  • Funding cannot be used for competition entries, vet and/or farrier expenses, or the purchase of a horse or equipment. Funding must be used for the event/training specified in the grant application.
  • An instructor may receive this grant one time.
  • The committee reserves the right to not award a grant in any given year if they determine that no candidate has met the criteria. Funds would then be held until the following year. The applications and discussions of the selection committee are confidential and their decisions are final.
  • If the grant recipient is unable to attend the specified event/training, TDF must be notified as soon as possible. Approval for a change in the use of funds is at the discretion of TDF and the Grant Selection Committee.

This grant program is made possible by funding donated by Maryal and Charles Barnett (MI), who conducted some Estate Planning with TDF. Maryal is a long-time premier US Dressage Instructor and TDF's Chair of the Board. The Dressage Foundation is pleased and honored that she has arranged to “give back” to her beloved sport in this special way. Maryal states, "The future of dressage and the welfare of our horses is dependent on the quality of education that our professionals obtain. There were people in my life such as Violet Hopkins and Lowell Boomer who were instrumental in making education possible for me, and many others through their generosity and foresight. Lowell Boomer, along with many others, saw the importance of education; and they founded the USDF to unite and educate dressage enthusiasts. Violet Hopkins gave her farm, time and wisdom each summer to make the Vi Hopkins Seminar for Dressage Instructors possible for those of us hungering for more knowledge. Now, it is my desire to give back to the sport that has given me such a rewarding and happy life. That is why I want to help to make it possible for other present and future dressage instructors/trainers to be able to obtain quality education through the Maryal and Charlie Barnett Continuing Education for Dressage Instructors Grants."

R: Maryal Barnett (MI) and Lowell Boomer (NE) stand beside the carved horse head Maryal has donated to USDF, through The Dressage Foundation. This donation honors the 81 founding organizers who met in Lincoln, Nebraska in 1973 to form and organize USDF. Her gift also permanently remembers Lowell Boomer, who devoted so many years of hard work in transforming the founding group's dream into action.