I got a question from Chip, a fellow I met at the AFA Convention. We had breakfast together every morning. He had some questions about the Worshipful Company of Farriers and the upcoming exam. These can be read in his comment under my blog about the big news for the world of farriery.
First, the requirements to gain the title of Associate of theWorshipful Company of Farriers (AWCF) are quite stringent. If you go to wcf.org.uk, you can look at the syllabus for the exam. I thought this exam was tougher than the FWCF. You have to make a shoe display from a comprehensive list of shoes. Shoe half a horse with shoes to be determined at the time of the exam. Take a written test where you answer 5 of 8 questions in 2 1/2 hours. (I had 17 hand written pages and 4 pages of diagrams when I took this test.) Evaluate the gait and conformation of a horse. Apply modern materials and techniques like acrylics, equithane, resections, quarter crack repair, etc. Evaluate and identify several problems on radiographs, and sit through an oral exam. Quite a tough time.
To shoe in the United Kingdom, a person has to hold a Diploma of the Worshipful Company of Farriers. The WCF has had an agreement with the American Farriers Association for a long time where they accept a person that has passed the CJF, and then waited for 2 years. At this point, you can apply for a DWCF. Another option is going through the tradtional apprentice program in the UK, and then taking the exam. Finally, I believe that an American can take the DWCF exam in order to qualify earlier to take the AWCF.
There is a lot of interest in taking this upcoming exam in the US, and we have compiled a list of candidates that will be getting an invitation soon. Since there is the required 2 year period after passing the CJF, all the candidates will have met that criteria. This exam will be for 12 candidates only, so space is quite limited. The exam will be in early November, and I will be offering a prep course in late September and early October. During the course, each candidate will take at least one complete practice exam. I am going to work as a probational examiner at a higher level exam at Melton Mowbry in April, so I will have some experience with a recent exam.
From what I understand, this will be the first time the WCF has offered a test on foreign soil. You can see why we are all so excited. As to the future of WCF exams in the US, we will have to see how well the powers that be like the first one. I will continue to update my blogs concerning this, but please post any questions you might have here.
Keep on keepin' on.