Mustang Leadership Partners

MLP Students

MLP students serve as the inspiration for our program and have demonstrated a sincere commitment to the program’s standards. Each girl enters the program with her own unique background experiences, fears, and goals for the future—and each girl who completes the program is poised to achieve her goals with improved self-confidence, self-esteem, and leadership skills.

Current Students

Akira [c/o 2023]

I am Akira and attend Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy. I have been a member of Mustang Leadership Partners (MLP) since January 9, 2019. I’ve learned unique things about the wild American mustang, mostly from a 2009 Kiger mare from Oregon named Lily. Ms. Sue Anne adopted her in 2011 when she was 2 years old and pregnant. Her filly was born at the farm and is now living at another barn in Tennessee.

Lily has challenged me to not be afraid of the unknown. She has helped me take risks without being nervous. I have learned so much from her and some of the other mustangs too. She is a great mentor, coach and teacher. I feel that I can take control of and conquer any uncomfortable situation because of my relationship and strong bond with Lily.

Aniyah [c/o 2022]

I am Aniyah and attend Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy. I began attending Mustang Leadership Partners (MLP) in 2017. I have learned so much these past years in MLP. Satin, a 1999 grulla mustang mare, has taught me a lot during our time together, especially about leadership. She has made me have good posture and sit proudly in the saddle. She has helped me to be positive in difficult situations. When I first became a student at MLP, I was overwhelmed by the information thrown at me by the mustangs and the instructors. I finally realized through Satin that to be successful, I have to know what I can do.

Alexis [c/o 2023]

I am Alexis and attend Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy. I have been in MLP since 2016. I’ve learned a lot about myself while working with horses. Initially, when I began to visit the farm and meet the mustangs, I had very little patience and was quick to blame the horse if something went wrong. This year, I have tried extra hard to stay focused and think about the horse’s needs more than mine. Not only am I improving my attitude towards the horses but also my friends. I have better self-control; therefore, I am able to reap the many benefits of learning how to be successful in life. MLP has been a great opportunity for me, and I am so thankful for this experience and Ms. Sue Anne. I love being at MLP.

TaTi [c/o 2024

I am TaTi and I started MLP in 2019. I enjoy doing groundwork with the mustangs and am beginning to understand the mechanics of how to control a horse, how to make the mustang understand what I am asking her to do. I also like riding and feel very connected to the mustang when in the saddle. MLP has taught me how to groom and ride a horse, but maybe what has surprised me the most is the many hours it takes to take care of just one horse. I appreciate the time I have at the farm.

Baile [c/o 2023]

I am Baile and have been in the Mustang Leadership program since 2017. I am attending Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy and am in the National Honor Society. I have many goals that I want to achieve, and one of them is to become a confident rider. I have enjoyed working with a 2002 mustang mare named Narci. Dr. Wells adopted her from Nevada as a yearling. She is now retired and enjoys her life in the pasture. I will miss her alot. She taught me how to ride quietly, keeping my legs and hands still and relaxed. I had to always remain calm when in her presence. I loved riding Narci because she loves to go. Narci has helped me become a stronger leader for myself and others.

Jady [c/o 2025]

I am Jady and I attend Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy. 2019 was my first year in MLP. Thus far, my biggest takeaway in this program is that horses pick up on your behavior pretty quickly, so, you have to maintain composure, and self-control at all times. In other words, remain calm regardless of the situation. I am becoming more relaxed and less nervous around the mustangs because I feel they trust me and want to listen and respond to my requests. I know that I am becoming a strong leader, and it is because of my work with mustangs.

Yesenia [c/o 2023]

I am Yesenia and attend Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy. 2019 was my first year in the Mustang Leadership program. I am very timid but inquisitive in whatever challenges I take on; the wild horses and their large size (compared to me, I am VERY petit) and at times unpredictable behavior certainly encourage me to quickly come out of my shell. Every mustang is unique just like my friends and family, so I have to spend time with each one to understand his/her behavior and quirks. I don’t yet have a favorite. I look forward to becoming a very confident leader with the wild horses by the end of this year.

Amari [c/o]

I am Amari and have been in the Mustang Leadership program since 2016. The mustang who has taught me the most about patience and leadership is Amis. He is a 2009 kiger gelding adopted by Dr. Wells in 2011 from the Bureau of Land Management’s holding pens in Oregon. He was a very nervous mustang when he arrived in Tennessee, but he was inquisitive and gentle. Since coming to Tennessee, Amis has turned into an all-around great mustang. He competes in 4th level dressage; even though he does not have the dressage confirmation, he loves the work and tries very hard. Amis is very sweet and sensitive and wants to be your friend.

Elyzah [c/o]

I am Elyzah and have been in Mustang Leadership since 2017. The mustang who has taught me the most about myself is Lil. I didn’t know how impatient I was until I met Lil. She encourages me to persevere, keep trying even though I might be frustrated and ready to give up. Sometimes, it appears that she does not have any intention of listening to me. She easily gets frustrated just like me, so we have something in common She has taught me to always be ready, to think ahead, to be prepared for the worst and probably the best will happen. Lil has taught me to stand up for myself especially at school. I no longer allow anyone to take advantage of me. I never thought a wild horse could teach me so much.


Vinceia [c/o 2016]

VC has been a student at CGLA since the school opened. The first time she visited the farm she was scared because the horses were so big, but she wanted to participate in MLP to learn more about the horses. Having been involved in the MLP program for quite some time, she is no longer scared, she loves being around the horses, and she serves as an excellent example for the younger students. She says that the program has helped her deal with her fears – not just with the horses, but in other areas of life where she meets challenges (like in math class!). She now knows how to face challenges: meet them head-on, process them, and then make an effort to overcome them. “I like that it is challenging and pushes you in certain ways,” she says. VC would like to be a veterinarian or a pediatrician when she grows up, and MLP is helping her and informing her decision more each week. She particularly likes working with the horses Breeze, Narci, and Chief. She advises, “You should treat your horse with respect so that it will do what you ask.” She also likes helping the younger MLP students, acting as a mentor. Whether working with horses or fellow students, VC knows the importance of having confidence in herself. She acknowledges that in the MLP program, “you have to show leadership,” and she certainly displays her leadership abilities well.

Brittney [c/o 2018]

Unlike some of the other students who admit to being scared and uncertain when they first started the program, Brittney has been full of excitement and anticipation from the beginning. For as long she can remember, she has wanted to learn how to do two things: play the piano and ride horses. Now she is finally able to pursue her dream, and along the way she is learning that she has even more interests and talents. She says that MLP is “one of the best things that I’ve joined in CGLA other than robotics.” When Brittney finishes high school, she plans to earn a degree in a science field (as yet undetermined) and minor in a social science. And this program is excellent preparation. She explains, “The horses are just like people, really – they’re just a lot bigger. They all have their own sort of personalities and they all are different and special in their own way. They all have something about them that makes them unique. Especially when you look into their eyes, you can see it!” Brittney loves every aspect of the MLP program – from the one-on-one time with the horses, to the trainers who explain things well and are very supportive. Beyond giving her something productive to do, she says that the program has helped her learn and accomplish so many things: “I’m most proud of accomplishing just getting here and being able to learn all these things that I probably wouldn’t have been able to learn if this program wasn’t open….This program really gives you a chance to accomplish those things that you really wish you could do – because I’ve always wanted to do this.” She is thankful to the trainers who have served as mentors and to the MLP leaders for “putting together this program for our school…and just for really taking care of us.”

Kasidey [c/o 2019]

I attend Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy and have been in Mustang Leadership Partners for five years. The first time I rode a mustang I was very stiff in my ride, but now I can easily allow myself to relax while still having a great posture. My personal goals are to go to college and complete my two undergraduate years at UTC, then get my doctorate degree in character design and storyboard at the Savannah College of Art and Design (in Georgia). Throughout my college years, I will be minoring in Spanish and Modern Japanese.

Yhara [c/o 2019]

I am a student at the Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy and have been a member of MLP since 2012. I have gained leadership, communication, and presentation skills that I never knew I even had until I became immersed in this wild horse program. Through MLP, I have had the privilege to travel to other states like Texas, Ohio, and Washington D.C. to showcase and bring awareness to the wild horse. I have also developed strong bonds and friendships with people and horses alike.

Mya [c/o 2020]

My name is Mya, and attend Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy. This is my fourth year at Mustang Leadership Partners (MLP). I’ve learned really special things about the wild american mustang, especially Amis and how he survived in the wild in Oregon. MLP has taught me so many skills: leadership, patience, confidence, and teamwork. I’m really thankful for the experience. My life goals consist of getting a degree in Biochemistry at the University of Tennessee Knoxville and becoming a Forensic Scientist. Being part of MLP will help me achieve my personal goals because I am learning how to persevere when the “going gets tough”.

Christina [c/o 2021]

My name is Christina and I attend Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy. I started MLP in 2014. I have set many goals for myself; a few of them are: attending college and graduate school, excel in lacrosse, maintain the highest GPA in my class, be the best I can be regardless of challenges ahead. I strive to be a leader to my my peers, and new people I may meet; MLP inspires me to do so. It’s not something that you can just walk in and do. You have to work hard every time you are with the Mustangs. Sahara, my favorite, doesn’t ever let me forget that. She tests my strengths to the max, challenges me mentally and physically. You must prove to her that you ARE the leader. She can sense when I’ve had a bad day or am nervous about something and will take advantage of my distracted behavior by refusing to listen to what I have to say. She assertively reminds me I need to focus on only her. Sahara and the other horses at MLP have changed my perspective on life and its challenges.

Justice [c/o 2020]

I am Justice and have been in the Mustang Leadership Partners program since 2017. As I have worked with the wild horse, I have gained a strong sense of pride which I will take with me as I join the Navy the Fall of 2020. The mustangs never judge me for who I am, and I don’t judge them for who they are. Although we look different, they have 4 legs and I have 2, we both have emotions and feelings, making us no different. I often work with a mustang named Amis who is very sensitive, smart and hard working. I have grown to respect him for his perseverance. He never disappoints because he tries so hard. I wish everyone could meet my mustang Amis.

Charlia [c/o 2016]

Keosha [c/o 2016]

Annie [c/o 2012]

Stacie [c/o 2012]

Tatyana [c/o 2012]

April [c/o 2012]