Below, you will find information about the GEEC, its organizers, and hosts.
Conference Organizers and Funders
The production of the GEEC conference program has received financial support from the Center for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment and Louna-Plussa Leader Goup, formed by municipalities of Forssa, Humppila, Jokioinen, Tammela, and Ypäjä in promotion of rural development.
The purpose of GEEC is to develop production and dissemination of knowledge in the equine industry. The objectives include development of education, best practices, and problem prevention.
The value of these objectives grows in the context of growth and rapid change in horse sports and leisure activities.
Central themes in the first GEEC in Ypäjä, Finland, are equine well-being and collaboration between horses and humans.
The first GEEC also aims ambitiously at a joint declaration, by the international contributors and participants, in support of building a bright, positive future for the equine industry.
Audiences of GEEC include both equine professionals and devoted enthusiasts – that is, producers and users of equine education.
The Conference is a result of collaboration and contacts between two key organizations in equine education, Equestrian Educational Network (EEN) and International Group for Equestrian qualifications (IGEQ). Other active contributors are the international equestrian federation (FEI) and European State Studs Association (ESSA).
GEEC will be organized every two years in a globally significant center of equine education. GEEC 2019 will be held in Saumur, France, one of the largest equestrian training centers in Europe.
Ypäjä Equine College
Ypäjä Equine College is the leading center of vocational equine education, training, and equestrian competitions in Finland. The Equine College serves Finland’s national equestrian teams as their training center.
The curriculum at Ypäjä Equine College covers all equestrian tracks and qualifications in Finland. 280 students participate in basic vocational education and 100 students take upper level courses. The 250 horses in the College include both Finnhorses and other breeds.
The College collaborates closely with the equine research unit of the National Resources Institute of Finland (LUKE) and the municipal government of Ypäjä. Other important partners include the horse clinic Ypäjän Hevossairaala, Equestrian Sports Museum of Finland, and Hippolis, the National Equine Competence Association of Finland.
The owners of the Equine College are the Ministry of Education and Culture, Equestrian Federation of Finland SRL, Finland’s national trotting and breeding association Suomen Hippos, and municipalities of Ypäjä, Forssa, and Jokioinen.
The College has its origins in the establishment of the State Stud and a Cavalry School in Ypäjä in the 1930s.
The Loimi river valley with its fertile lands and equine landscapes epitomises Ypäjä's countryside. Ypäjä's ancient horse pastures form an exceptionally large area of meadows and forest glades still grazed by horses, an important part of Finland’s national heritage.
Ypäjä is a vibrant rural town of 2400
inhabitants in Southwestern Finland, some 140 kilometers from Finland’s capital
city Helsinki and 75 kilometers from Turku, a regional center and former
Ypäjä is best known for its prominent role in the Finnish equine industry, education, and breeding of the Finnhorse, Finland’s all-purpose national breed.
The Versatile Horse is a film about the horse industry in Finland and its influence on society in both rural and urban areas. The Film is published by Finnish Horse Board Network.