The density of the Thoroughbred racing industry in Kentucky is immense and is concentrated in the central part of the state. Working with the industry employers allowed us to get a glimpse of the industry’s shared pain points that plague many farms. Communication within the established employer collaborative allowed members to understand that they were not always speaking the same language, although they sought the same type of skills for employees. Because the equine industry is based heavily on relationships and word of mouth information transfer, it was realized that specific data needed to be captured.
The data collection project was created to obtain that concrete data detailing the state of the Thoroughbred industry workforce. Currently, there is limited industry-specific data that quantifies the scope of workforce needs and where deficiencies exist. The data collected from the survey will form an industry baseline to enhance existing projects and identify new programs and needed implementation of initiatives.
In addition to data collection, the employers of the collaborative recognized the need to understand the wishes and concerns of their staff to assist with recruitment and elevate their facilities. The collaborative formed a subcommittee committed to researching, understanding, creating, and implementing a farm management leadership program based on employee feedback. The goal is to educate and support upper management to ensure they are good leaders, helping create a positive workplace culture, and allowing great places to work for the populations coming through newly formed pipelines within the industry.
- Kentucky Thoroughbred Association and Fayette County School System partner to provide equine opportunities to students
- Locust Trace Promotional Video
- Executive Summary of Locust Trace Equine Program Partnership
- Work-Based Learning Opportunities: Tech Ready Apprentices for Careers in Kentucky (TRACK) Program