Josephina Eli from Tea, South Dakota

Yes, the next blog is also about a female student. It has been quite a new experience for us to have so many women students, and I must say, a great experience. Next up is Josie Eli, known as Josephina. She is a young lady from Tea, South Dakota.


Josie’s horse experience came through her grandma. When she was about 8 years old, her grandma got a horse and Josie was instantly hooked. She started riding, taking lessons, and began her love affair with the horse. Josephina was able to get her own horses when she was in middle school, and has had horses since. Like most farriers, Josie loves most outdoor activities. Riding, hiking, hanging out with friends and enjoying stuff like bonfire and country music.


Josie has a bachelor’s degree in Animal Science with a minor in Equine Studies from South Dakota State University. While in college she took a basic farriery course that was offered as an elective. At the beginning of the class, she had no idea how much she would enjoy shoeing and trimming. Very quickly Josephina could see what a difference a great farrier could make in the life of a horse. Since she has always dreamed of having a job where she could work outside with horses, it was easy to imagine what being a farrier would be like. Becoming a great farrier seemed like the perfect lifestyle, so she began to figure out just how to become that great farrier.

Heartland Horseshoeing School was recommended by the farriers that she reached out to, so she started doing more research into the Heartland. We seemed like the best fit to help Josephina meet her goals, so she enrolled and started the process of getting here. Going to any school is expensive, but going to the wrong school is so much more expensive.

Hot fitting

You can really see that this girl loves her job.

In November of 2017 she decided that Heartland Horseshoeing School was where she was coming. She saved enough money by baby sitting, working at her parent’s two daycares, and saving every penny she could with a laser focus of getting to school. She was able to get the tuition raised without a loan. She began school in the March class of 2018, and as the end of the Practical Farrier Course loomed, Josie realized just how much a few more weeks would benefit her goal of becoming a great farrier. Her grandmother stepped in with a loan, and we have the pleasure of keeping Josephina here for an extended time as she learns and develops more of her farrier skills.

Her goals are pretty straightforward. Graduate from Heartland Horseshoeing School. Never stop learning as a farrier. Always do the best she can for the noble horse that gives so much to us, and run a successful business where she gets to know her clients (horses and people) on more than just a professional level. I believe that these goals are a foregone conclusion for this young lady, and I look forward to seeing just how far she will take her farrier career.

Blueberry checking up on Josephina’s trim

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