Phil Jorna comes to the Heartland from London. London in Ontario, Canada that is. Phil is a 42-year old who is making a career change to become a farrier. When you meet Phil, you will be impressed by how sincere and nice this guy is. He has a history is customer service, dog training and martial arts. He did a little MMA fighting, but couldn’t stand hurting people. I think that sort of sentiment makes it hard for you to be a good MMA fighter. Phil is super fit because of his martial arts background, and that has been a big help in becoming a farrier. This job is hard enough to learn when you are young and limber, so it helps the older guys that have stayed limber.
Phil left his wife, six kids and a grandkid behind for 8 weeks to pursue this trade. We all know that education is a sacrifice, but I am always awed at the distance some are willing to go. However, the sacrifice it takes to learn how to shoe horses almost always pays off for those that learn it well and are willing to work. I don’t know of any other trade like it where a person can end up making such a great living in a blue-collar industry.
Phil is a very relationship oriented person and you can tell that he values the personal relationships he is able to make and foster with others. This is going to make him a very sought after farrier. His goal is to be a great farrier, and if he is able to deliver on the practical side of the trade, his personal traits are going to make his business a huge success. Phil lives by four core values, and these are evident when you spend some time with. These values are: Honesty, Integrity, Accountability and Loyalty.
Phil is only with us for the 8-week Practical Farrier Course, so he plans on apprenticing with the high-level farrier, Doug Clark, that recommended he come to the Heartland. Phil borrowed my book from Doug before coming to school, and reading that over the last year convinced him that he wanted to learn at our school. Phil’s short-term goal is to graduate from school, and he hopes to become a Certified Journeyman Farrier within the next 5 years.
Besides farriery, Phil will continue to work with dogs. He actually trains dogs for competition and loves working with such advanced training techniques. Farriery will be his passion and the dogs will become his hobby. He used to make some of his living working with people and their dogs, and that knowledge has certainly helped a lot with his horsemanship. I think he won’t be able to help himself when he gets home, and will probably still work with other people and their dogs, even though he will be able to make a lot more money per hour shoeing. Passions are passions.
London, Ontario is about to have another great person involved in shoeing horses. I am sure that I will hear Phil’s name in this trade for years to come, and even though he started a bit late, he will become a great farrier. We feel blessed to be a part of the start of his career.