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  Welcome to Willowbend Farm, Inc.

The Enrollment Application for six-week or three-day Herd 2 Human Programs can be downloaded, filled out, and emailed to: or mailed via US Mail to Willowbend Farm, 13400 Turah, Rd Clinton, MT  59825.

Willowbend Farm's 

SAA - Approved 

Herd 2 Human Instructor School

Herd 2 Human - Curriculum for Certification of Instructors


Willowbend Farm, Inc., owned by Jeff and Darlene Patterson, is the home of Herd 2 Human, an equine program designed to help individuals learn better communication and relationship skills through interspecies communication and interaction with the horse. Herd to human teaches self-value and self- discovery that will assist individuals in overcoming PTSD, broken relationships, and other life challenges.

Our mission is to train Herd 2 Human instructors to duplicate and teach the program. The process of becoming a Herd 2 Human instructor begins with a passion to connect energetically and physically with horses and work with humans experiencing emotional challenges. Certification as a Herd 2 Human Instructor will demonstrate accomplishment of the following objectives:

  1. Learn or refine skills of self-discovery, meditation, intuitive consciousness, (deductive observation of horse and human interaction) as well as intuitive writing. If not already teaching these practices, the Herd 2 Human instructor will learn how to guide others in these practices.
  2. Learn Herd 2 Human philosophies and methods of interspecies communication with proficiency and the ability to teach others.
  3. Learn to recognize the interaction between horse and human and how it affects both.
  4. Learn how to organize and facilitate individual and/or group sessions.
  5. Learn an overall view of horse husbandry (general care … health, nutrition, and basic emergency treatment).
  6. Learn an overall view of appropriate barn/facility management (safety, liabilities, and general responsibilities of the instructor).
  7. Learn what the Herd 2 Human instructor’s role is when working with mental health professionals in EAP and PTSD therapy.
  8. Learn how to build and promote a Herd 2 Human practice.

The Objective

The objective of the Herd 2 Human school is to provide students a new and unique vocation in the field of equine assisted learning and PTSD therapy. Upon successful completion and certification, Herd 2 Human instructors will have the skills to develop and operate their own income earning practice.


Willowbend Farm, Inc. is located 12 miles east of Missoula,1 mile east of Exit 113 on Turah Road next to the Clark Fork River. Our facility includes an 18,000-square foot indoor arena and pastures. The indoor arena hosts 1,200 square feet of office, a tack-room, bathroom, and instruction area at ground level. The second story provides an additional 1,200 square feet of enclosed and heated area with a private meeting room, Reiki room, bathroom, and a 24 X 50 glassed-in observation room/classroom.

School Administrators and Faculty

Jeffrey T. Patterson (Jeff): Owner, Founder of Herd 2 Human/Master Instructor

Jeff has been a horseman since childhood. Like many horsemen, Jeff was taught ways of handling horses that were far from beneficial to him or the horse that bordered on abusive. As Jeff recognized and accepted responsibility for his poor approach to horsemanship and started listening to the horse, he discovered a means of communicating with the horse that changed his world. As a result, Jeff developed and teaches a methodology entitled Herd 2 Human, proven to be an affective aid in trauma therapy and building personal relationships. Utilizing this systematic approach to thought, technique, and timing, Herd 2 Human creates a safe place for the horse, provides the human with a sense of value and purpose, while developing new emotional pathways from places of fear to inner peace and confidence.

Since 1981 Jeff’s work as a private investigator has been digging deep into the intimate lives of others … gathering facts and examining the personalities, habits, and emotional states of those involved in trauma, dispute, and broken relationships. In addition, to the countless hours on the street observing sub-rosa human behavior, Jeff has examined hundreds of clients, family members, and witnesses, listening and documenting their personal stories of abuse, betrayal, mistrust, and violent acts such as rape, suicide, and homicide. On many occasions, Jeff used horses to assist him in overcoming seemingly impassable roadblocks with witnesses who were unable or unwilling to express themselves due to trauma. The combination of years of investigation with a lifetime of horsemanship has been a unique and invaluable education in trauma and the domino effect it has on everyone involved.

Darlene C. Patterson: Co-Owner, Co-Founder of Herd 2 Human/Master Instructor

Darlene has been at Jeff’s side since they married in 1976 and has assisted in developing Herd 2 Human from its conception. Darlene is an accomplished rider and loves to instruct.  Her thousands of miles of endurance conditioning and competitions afford her an exceptional ability to help others with balanced, efficient riding techniques, athletic conditioning of the horse, and relationship building skills.  She has ridden over 20,000 miles in conditioning and over 4,000 miles in competition with the American Endurance Riders Conference and competitive trail riding associations, in addition to managing (with Jeff) 3 well-attended competitions. Darlene has skills in business to include, but not limited to, accounting, payroll, accounts payables, and receivables with a family construction company. Darlene is a Reiki Master, trained in the Mikao Usui method.

Admission Requirements

Admission into the Herd 2 Human Instructor school requires:

  1. Prior experience in handling and caring for horses.
  2. Each student attend either a 3-day intensive or a 6-week Herd 2 Human workshop as part of their application for instructor training to assure        the student will be personally comfortable that they are physically and emotionally capable of handling horses and attaining success.
  3. Each student to complete the Herd 2 Human instructor enrollment application.
  4. Have adequate transportation to attend training.
  5. Present a genuine desire to work with horses assisting humans in need.

School Calendar

The school observes all federal holidays, and includes the first day after Thanksgiving and the day after Christmas. Instructor classes are scheduled to begin twice a year, spring and fall, or as needed to meet the enrollment demand. The first 60 hours of school is held at Willowbend Farm. The following requirements of school are scheduled over the course of the following year governed by the availability of program attendees to populate training classes.

Prior Credit

Willowbend Farm, Inc. will evaluate all prior training to ensure students meet the standards of our school and the Herd 2 Human program. If we feel students have acquired the necessary skills, we may reduce their required training time.

Hours and Tuition

Full Herd 2 Human Instructor certification course is 84 clock hours:

  • 60 hours of initial training in the classroom and barn at Willowbend Farm
  • Practice classes (homework) in an approved equine venue(s), supervised by a Herd 2 Human master instructor.  These hours are not clock hours part of the required 84 hours and can be done at will within 1 year of completing the first 60 hours.
  • 24 hours at Willowbend Farm for final review of evaluations and certification upon completing the required homework.

Tuition: $15,000 upon acceptance and registration.

Tuition reflects the cost of providing the course. There are often discounts, contributions from Willowbend Farm, Inc., and/or scholarships available that can reduce or satisfy the tuition. Interested parties are encouraged to check with Willowbend Farm for possible opportunities.


  • Attend and participate as a student in either a H2H 6-week (one class per week) or 3-day intensive program taught by a master instructor.
  • Sixty (60) hrs. instructor training at Willowbend Farm to include (but not limited to):

    • Philosophies and methodologies of H2H.
    • Program, horse, staff, and barn management (including determining the appropriateness of teaching facilities and horses for H2H).
    • Planning 6-week (once weekly) and 3-day intensive H2H programs.
    • Business aspects of H2H.
    • Written exam with a passing grade of at least 70%.
    • Hands-on horsemanship exam with a passing grade of at least 70%.

  • Within one (1) year following the first 60 hrs. of classroom and barn instruction at Willowbend Farm, student instructors will attain additional training (homework) at their own venue with approval and supervision of a master instructor as follows:  
    • Organize, populate, and teach at least one class of 4 to 6 participants following the H2H student workbook.   
    • The class may be either a 3-day intensive or 6-week Herd 2 Human program.
  • At least half of your students must be individuals who are not well known to you. (Suggestion: Obtain referrals from people you know.)
  • Teaching must be done at an H2H-appropriate and approved facility with appropriate horses.
  • Appropriately document/record the process of organizing and teaching students. Choose your method of supervised documentation in a way         that will not interfere with the relationship building process.
  • Group sessions must be done with the assistance of another horse professional with preference given to H2H instructors, instructor trainees,         or qualified students who have been through the program.
  • Upon instructor student's confidence in their proficiency, create and provide a video (or equivalent visual and audio media) to a master                   instructor showing applicable portions of the instructor student’s work. The visual documentation should be done with discretion and not                 interfere with nor influence the flow and purpose of the class.
  • Obtain and provide copies of all student evaluations for review by a master instructor.

Final Skill Evaluation

  • A master instructor will audit instructor student’s work over the course of a 3-day intensive program with four to six students. The 3-day                 intensive program may be populated in part by students from the instructor training groups. Instructors may co-instruct as they did during               training for the purpose of the final skill evaluation provided that they demonstrate instructor skills needed for certification.
  • Each instructor trainee will share their process and experiences with the master instructor and participating fellow instructor students.


  • Certification will be determined by the combined test results, evaluations of the instructor trainee’s students, and by the final auditing master         instructor.
  • Upon successful completion of the above curriculum, instructor students will be certified to conduct their own practice, teaching the H2H               program to students within the scope of the H2H Student Workbook and other H2H instructional material.

NOTE: Instructor Certification does not qualify instructors to teach other instructors.

NOTE: Instructor school does not guarantee successful completion and graduation. The school provides the best instruction practice equally to all students. It is each individual student’s responsibility to apply themselves and take advantage of the training offered in pursuit of their success. While Willowbend Farm strives to inspire and promote the success of each graduating student, Willowbend Farm offers no guarantee that graduation and certification will provide any particular business success.


Grading and Evaluations

Willowbend Farm, Inc. grades students based on their skills in the following areas:

  1. Self-discovery, meditation, intuitive consciousness (deductive observation of horse/human interaction), and how well they guide others in these practices.
  2. Interaction with other humans, their students, and horses.
  3. Herd 2 Human philosophies and methods of interspecies communication and their ability to teach others.
  4. Understanding of horse behavior and the effects of human interaction.
  5. Understanding of overall horse husbandry (general care … health, nutrition, and basic emergency treatment).
  6. Appropriate barn/facility management skills.
  7. Understanding of the basic building and promotion of a Herd 2 Human practice.
  8. Ability to organize and facilitate individual and/or group sessions.
  9. Understanding of what the Herd 2 Human instructor’s role is when working with mental health professionals in EAP.
  10. Commitment and attendance to the course.

Evaluations of the student’s proficiency will be a combination of written examinations, oral and written evaluations from the participants the student worked with during the course, as well as from the master instructor and assistant Herd 2 Human instructors.

Continuing courses may be available to students who have not fully met H2H requirements by the end of the course in one or more of the required objectives and/or evaluations to complete graduation and certification.


Students are required to attend all classes and complete all follow up training. Upon registration, each student will be provided class schedules and are expected to be on time. Tardy or non-attendance will be considered as part of the student’s evaluation for graduation and certification. If tardiness or absence is due to reasonable and acceptable circumstances, arrangements may be made to make up lost time.

Student Records and Transcripts

Willowbend Farm, Inc. will maintain student records for a minimum of 3 years. At any point during this time, the student may contact the school and request copies of certificates and/or documents that became part of their record.

Standard of Conduct

Consistent with the mission and instructor student objectives of the Herd 2 Human program taught at Willowbend Farm, Inc., it is required that all students conduct themselves accordingly. The school will not tolerate excessive foul or abusive language, use of drugs, alcohol, personal habits or other practices that are obviously offensive to others or inconsistent with the overall practices and philosophies of Herd 2 Human. Regular and unnecessary interruptions during class and instruction may result in the student being asked to leave and possibly expelled from the course. Excessive, untimely, or inappropriate photography may result in the loss of that privilege and considered a violation of the Standards of Conduct. Acceptable use of cell phones and cameras will be discussed in the first class.

Right to Expel

Willowbend Farm, Inc. reserves the right to expel any student that grossly violates the Standard of Conduct or fails to meet the requirements set forth above. Should a student be expelled, they will be refunded pursuant to DVA Regulation 21.4255.


Upon successful accomplishment of all the course objectives, students will receive a certificate of completion titling them a “Certified Herd 2 Human Instructor.”