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Working at CSU

Great people, great horses

May 18, 2009

Most children don't receive a horse for their first birthday, but that wasn't unusual in Paula Moffett's household. Her dad had participated in local rodeos and had worked as a horse trader. Moffett and her siblings grew up riding and doing farm chores - and developing a special kinship with horses. That love of horses, coupled with a love of learning, inspired Moffett to pursue becoming a veterinarian.

Getting to know Paula Moffett

Growing up, Moffett lived in Parsons, Kan., and Collinsville, Okla., and then moved to Rockland, Idaho, where she graduated from high school. She eventually moved back to Kansas and attended a local community college, where she did a basic studies program for two years. She then applied to Oklahoma State University and was accepted into the Agricultural Science and Natural Resources program with a pre-veterinary major.

“I packed up and moved to a place where I had no friends and no family and put myself through school,” said Moffett. “I wanted to make my family proud, especially my mom, and receive a degree that I hoped would lead to a great career.”

Started as a volunteer

After completing her undergraduate work, Moffett applied to veterinary school at Oklahoma State University but was not accepted. Looking for other options, Moffett came upon the Equine Reproduction Laboratory at Colorado State University. She moved to Fort Collins in 2001, starting out as a volunteer at the ERL with a desire to continue her education.

Faculty members could see the potential Moffett had to succeed in the field of equine reproduction and encouraged her to seek a master’s degree. She applied and was accepted into the program. She soon moved into a more permanent position in the lab as a research associate and eventually completed her degree.

Job she loves

Moffett now works with Dr. Jason Bruemmer in the commercial stallion program. She helps with all aspects of assisted reproduction of the stallion, the management of stallions standing at the ERL and outpatient stallions, as well as coordinating stallions for ongoing research projects. She helps organize short courses, keeps the laboratory running with supplies, manages the frozen semen inventory, including frozen semen destined for export, and is a great help to new graduate students who are learning the ins and outs of the ERL.

“My own children see me as a role model and they know school is very important,” said Moffett. “I have been in school almost my whole life, and now I’m working at a job I love. I enjoy working in equine reproduction, and I get to be with great horses and great people, so this is a good fit for me. It is amazing working at the ERL knowing the laboratory is internationally
known for its advances in equine reproduction.”

With hard work and dedication, the dream of a bigger life for Moffett and her family became reality. She now lives north of Fort Collins, has her own horse, a career she loves, and has completed a master’s degree. This, she says, is where she wants to be.

Originally published in the 2009 Equine Reproduction Laboratory Magazine.