ITHACA, N.Y. — Cornell University’s Oxley Equestrian Center has received the 2023 Community Partner of the Year award from Challenge Workforce Solutions, an Ithaca-based organization dedicated to supporting individuals with disabilities and other employment barriers.
The Oxley Equestrian Center, home to Cornell’s equestrian and men’s and women’s polo teams, has been partnered with Challenge for two years. The facility provides a safe space for work assessments for disabled individuals, hosts weekly visits from Challenge’s pre-vocational group and participates in an internship program through the New York State Employment Training Program.
Challenge’s pre-vocational group helps with numerous tasks at the Oxley Equestrian Center every Tuesday.
“Challenge participants have come and polished all of the polo trophies, cleaned the bleachers, painted horse jumps, pulled weeds out of the outdoor arena, cobwebbed the barns, and the list goes on,” Ian Barrie, manager of the Oxley Equestrian Center, said. “We are so happy to have them in the facility, excited to be here gaining work experience and helping Oxley live up to its potential, and we are honored that they recognized us with this award.”