In a nutshell, what do you do, and did Albion prepare you for the job?
I coordinate the import of horses into the United States from Europe, specifically Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and eastern European countries. I also assist in the export of horses from the United States to the Middle East and Europe. Albion played a big roll in preparing me for this job. Albion helped to facilitate my position at Horseflight.com through the study abroad program in Dresden, Germany where I was able to intern at the Sachsen Thueringen Horse Association. Through my internship at the association I was introduced to the manager at Horseflight.com and was later offered a job. Albion also helped me attain the skills and confidence to succeed.
What did it mean for you to be involved in equestrian activities at Albion?
My involvement at the equestrian center meant a great deal to me. My time at the Held Center was always a highlight to my day. I made many friends, was able to improve my riding skills, and it was a good break from class. I was part of the Albion hunt seat team and also took dressage lessons with Danielle Menteer. Both the equestrian team and the riding lessons helped me become a more confident rider and person overall.
What's your favorite equestrian memory?
My very first hunt seat team show was hosted by Western Michigan University, I won the first class I competed in. I remember reflecting back on my life at that moment and thinking that my dad would have been very proud of me. And as I was looking up into the sky, I knew he was smiling down at me from heaven.
Are you still active in equestrian life?
I am the luckiest person in the world! I get to work with horses almost everyday. One of my jobs at Horseflight is to greet the horses arriving to the U.S from Europe at John F. Kennedy airport; I also care for and exercise horses before they are flown to their various destinations. After work and on the weekends, I have the pleasure of riding and showing my horse. Horses are my passion. I couldn’t imagine life without them!
How did your Albion experience help you in your career?
I am glad to be an Albion graduate because it helped me become who I am today. The support and knowledge of my mentors, professors, riding instructors, and friends have helped me become a confident and forward-thinking individual. I can’t thank Albion enough for its dedication to me.
Solid Final Show for Dressage Team (February 20-21, 2016)
The final weekend of competition for the Briton dressage team was a double header show hosted by Lake Erie College in Painesville, Ohio, on February 20 and 21. Though there was only room for six of the eight riders to compete over the weekend, Albion was still able to rack up enough points to finish in third place both days and end the season as the third place team in the region.
First year Skye Campbell (Grand Rapids / Caledonia) won second place in her Introductory level class with an impressive 65.9 percent test. Campbell was named regional reserve champion at Intro level, which also makes her eligible for a wild card spot at IDA Nationals, though these spots cannot be officially filled until later when all the regions complete their regular season shows.
Albion riders were also able to compete for the first time in the dressage seat equitation classes, which is a new offering for the Intercollegiate Dressage Association. The first year students reigned supreme again, with Kendra Gembala (Cedar Lake, Ind. / Hanover Central) winning second in First/Upper, and Bria Flanagan (Harrisburg, S.D. / Lincoln) with second in Lower.
Though a handful of the Briton riders fought a stomach bug over the course of the weekend, they still pulled it together for a successful show. Coach Danielle Menteer had this to say about the weekend: “Everyone worked really hard and was in high spirits. We also really appreciated the efficient, well managed, snafu-free show that LEC put on. It made the weekend quite enjoyable.”
Britons Give Solid Performance at IHSA Semi Finals (March 19-20, 2016)
Albion's pair of IHSA Regional champion western riders traveled to Black Hawk College in Galva, Illinois over the weekend of March 19 and 20 to pit their skills against the champions of other IHSA regions and try for a chance at the IHSA National Championship show.
In the Intermediate division, sophomore Jourdan Tonti (Livonia/Churchill) finished fifth in her horsemanship class, while classmate and teammate Taylor Sandberg (Spring Lake/Spring Lake) competed in Advanced horsemanship with an identical result.
Meanwhile, Albion's alumni division regional standout Katie Petchell '13 traveled to a separate Semi Final show at Middle Tennessee State University, where she finished fifth in Alumni Reining.
The Britons' post-season results came as Tonti and Sandberg received recognition from the IHSA for their achievements in the classroom as well; the sophomores were both named to the IHSA All-Academic teams for the 2015-2016 school year.
Evan Kneisel, '17
As a senior in high school, Evan Kneisel, '17, visited his fair share of colleges, trying to figure out where he wanted to spend the next four years of his life. During his visit to Albion's campus, though, he instantly knew that it was the right fit for him. He describes Albion College as tightly knit, whose faculty and students are all actively involved in the betterment of both the College and the surrounding community. "What sets Albion apart from other schools is how the faculty genuinely want you to succeed and they will go to great lengths to put you in a position for success," he says. When asked to describe his experience at Albion he answers with one word—"opportunity".
Evan has had many hands-on opportunities throughout his time on campus. The Carl A. Gerstacker Institute for Business and Management has allowed him to gain real world experience through his internship with The Parade Company in Detroit, MI. The transferable skills he obtained from the time spent there helped him to then get another summer internship within the Institutional Advancement department on Albion's campus. Here, he was able to work on "behind the scenes" projects and work with people who care about the direction of Albion College, which then deepened his own appreciation for his school.
On campus, Evan is a member of the Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity and he is involved with the Gerstacker Institute, which he says has given him the resources and opportunities to expand himself professionally.
Originally, he chose Albion because of the small class sizes and how genuine and passionate the professors are. He explains that he is glad that he chose to attend school here also because the Liberal Arts education has allowed him to become versatile in his education, to learn a little bit about everything while also focusing in on one major area of study. He explains, "the most valuable thing that Albion has taught me wasn't learned in the classroom, it's what I have gained through experiences while out in the real world."
After completing his degree in mass communications at Albion, Evan plans to move out west where his family is located to get a few years of "real-world" experience under his belt in either design, marketing, advertising or sponsorship, before applying for graduate school
An Albion College education. It's hands-on. It's the liberal arts. It's career readiness. It's providing you the knowledge, skills, and experiences you'll need to succeed in college, in your career, and in your life.