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Step 4

Step 4 – Intermediate Studies

Students who have passed their final beginning mentorship will need to pass a written exam before entering the intermediate level.

Students entering IS will be considered Intermediate Student Practitioners (ISP) and may be advertised on the PHCP website as such.

During the intermediate study period students will practice their skills and gain experience working on their own horses and building a clientele. They are encouraged to use the PHCP Chat forum to post photos, and discuss any interesting or challenging cases that they may encounter. Students at this level should be taking lots of hoof photos following the PHCP guidelines.

This step should be sufficiently long enough for the student to gain experience in the real world and work on a variety of horses. The suggested period will vary widely, depending on the student’s previous experience and progress. Before progressing to the advanced level a student’s trimming should be quick and efficient with a clean professional look on simple maintenance trims, with some experience on pathologies. Their horse handling skills should be proficient and their interaction with clients should be professional.


Students are required to do three mentorships during Intermediate Study.  One mentorship may be with a mentor they previously worked with and the other two must be with mentors they have not worked with before.

Students will choose and contact the Mentor directly to schedule mentorships as needed. Mentors have very busy schedules with their full time businesses so please give them time to reply.  Mentors have certain horses they like to teach on, as students will be trimming, so plan on scheduling these mentorships well in advance.

Please read Making the Most of Your Mentorship before scheduling your mentorship.

Mentorships cost $175 per day with $75 subsidized by PHCP.  Students will pay the remaining $100/day fee directly to the mentor. PHCP offers these subsidies for one or two day mentorships. Students doing a three day mentorship are responsible for the full $175 on the third day.

Some mentors are able to travel to students and work with them on their own client horses. Students should visit the PHCP private chat forum for more details on traveling mentorships.

The first two mentorship may take place anytime during Intermediate Study and the third mentorship should be scheduled when the student feels ready to advance to step 5. We would encourage you to spread these mentorships out as there is a huge learning curve at this level and it is important to have time to practice new skills between mentorships.

Student Progress Report  should be submitted after the completion of each mentorship, by the student.

Required subjects

Students are required to take an advanced nutrition and a metabolic issues course. These may be taken earlier in the training program but must be completed before finishing IS. The options for advanced nutrition are NRC Plus with Dr.Kellon or The Smart Way to Feed Horses, a PHCP webinar. The options for metabolic issues are Dr. Kellon’s Cushing’s and Insulin Resistance or PHCP’s EMS (IR)/ PPID webinar.

Media Presentation

With the completion of required subjects and the approval of the third mentor, the student may submit their IS Media Presentation to the Evaluation Committee. This presentation is designed to prepare the student for the Final Media Presentation. Visit the documents section of the training page for the presentation guidelines.

In lieu of travel to examiners, which can be expensive and difficult for many students, PHCP evaluates students with a combination of media presentations and the documents collected in a student’s file. Putting together a media presentation may seem time consuming but we feel it is a more accessible alternative to the typical in-person examinations required in the farrier community. Our reliance on photos requires impeccable workmanship so the student may demonstrate a conscientious attention to detail and mastery of their tools. Please take the time to submit your most professional polished work. This is a fantastic opportunity to receive feedback from some of our top mentors who make up the Evaluation Committee. Not everyone passes on the first try. You will receive support and direction to help with any additional submissions that may be requested.

Once an Intermediate Student Practitioner (ISP) passes the IS Media Presentation they will be considered an Advanced Student Practitioner (ASP) and will be designated as such on the website.

Important: Intermediate Student Practitioners and Advanced Student Practitioners who choose to be advertised on the PHCP website, are required to complete one mentorship or submit a media presentation annually to maintain their listing. The media presentation will follow the guidelines for the Intermediate Studies Media Presentation. It will not be judged in a pass/fail capacity, but the student will receive feedback in the form of written comments by Evaluation Committee members. Media Presentations may be submitted for three years in lieu of a mentorship. After three years a mentorship is required to remain advertised.