Dr. Debra Marie Powell is the new Program Manager for Hocking College’s Equine Sciences program.
Originally from Charleston, South Carolina, Powell earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from Hampton University in Virginia and a master’s degree in animal sciences from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana before receiving her doctorate from the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.
Dr. Powell owns and operates a mobile small business, Powell’s Equine and Canine Therapeutic Services (PECTS). With this business, she provides alternative therapies, including massage, therapeutic laser, therapeutic ultrasound and pulsed electromagnetic therapy, among others, to horses, dogs and cattle. She also provides nutritional and pasture management consulting for her equine clients.
Her primary areas of interest have been in equine nutrition, and how nutrition and exercise work together to benefit horses. In addition, Dr. Powell earned the following certifications:
- Professional Animal Scientist (PAS)
- Certified Equine Massage Therapist (CEMT)
- Certified Canine Massage Therapist (CCMT)
- Certified Equine Rehabilitation Practitioner (CERP)
Dr. Powell is also an accomplished author who writes a bi-monthly column for the international magazine Arabian Finish Line. She’s also contributed to The Horse, Horse Management, Arabian Horse Life, Practical Horsemen and Equus.
She’s also author of the textbook “Anatomy and Physiology of the Equine Digestive System Just Facts…No Fillers,” and authored the chapter “Equestrian Spaces” for the textbook “Facility Planning and Design for Health, Physical Activity, Recreation and Sport, 14th Ed” by Thomas H. Sawyer.
During her career Dr. Powell has won the Sister Mary Joseph Pomeroy Award for Faculty Excellence for Scholarship from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College and Academic Advisor of the Year from the Ohio State University Agricultural Technical institute.
In 2012, Dr. Powell was invited to speak at a workshop for the International Conference on Equine Exercise Physiology in Liverpool, England.
She also served as the Equine Physiotherapist for the 1998 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia, as well as the 2012 games in London.
She serves on the Board of Directors for the National Association of Equine Affiliated Academics and serves as the co-chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee for that association. In addition, she serves on the standing committee for student competitions in the Equine Science Society and is the national advisor for the Collegiate Horsemen’s Association.
She was also recently featured in the Spring 2021 edition of the University of Kentucky Alumni Association’s Kentucky Alumni Magazine.
Her primary duties as Hocking College’s Equine Sciences Program Manager include planning and overseeing the development, management and promotion of the equine programs; teaching classes; providing students with academic program development and student academic advising; leading progress review and accreditation efforts; supervising full-time and adjunct faculty, and engaging in Hocking College’s Leisure Learning programs.
Interested in a career in Equine Sciences?
Each major is a two-year program that involves the interactive, hands-on learning of the skills necessary to succeed in your future careers.
The Wilderness Horsemanship degree program was developed to teach students the skills needed for being a backcountry park ranger or wilderness guide. Students also learn how to drive wagons through various terrain, packhorses into the backcountry, teach basic riding skills and proper use and repair riding equipment.
Farrier Science and Business
Hocking College offers one of the few farrier science associate degree programs in the United States. The program offers a unique combination of farrier skills and business management. Students learn the newest and safest techniques. They develop skills on gas forges and in shoeing performance horses and corrective shoeing.
As most farriers are self-employed, the business portion of the program provides students with basic skills like management and accounting and more advanced skills.
Equine Health and Complementary Therapies
The Equine Health and Complementary Therapies program focuses on the health care component of the horse industry. Students develop skills in traditional health care such as nutrition, anatomy and physiology, broodmare and foal care, and non-traditional complementary therapies. Students gain valuable hands-on experience in their first semester by acting as a veterinarian assistant or by spending the night doing foal watch. Students also get hands-on experience in the newer disciplines of equine acupressure and massage.
Coupled with classes in equine business management, marketing and accounting, graduates of the program will gain the skills they'll need to start their own business.