Callie Henly is an Alumni of the San Augustine High School Wolfpack class of 2013. She graduated from Texas A&M University May 2017 with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Communications/Journalism and Animal Science. Callie is currently pursuing a Master’s of Science in Animal Science with a focus on consumer education at Texas A&M and will graduate May 2019. To learn more about her journey to where she is today, we asked Callie the following questions:
What do you want to do in life/What is your dream in life?
I ultimately want to make the most of every situation thrown my way and find the benefit in every opportunity. Upon graduating with my master’s degree, I hope to first achieve several goals within Texas 4-H in my current position. Beyond that, I hope to continue to expand my career in marketing and agricultural consumer education.
Because of my deeply rooted background in the industry, my passion is communicating the story of agriculture and making an impact on consumer awareness of production agriculture. However, my main goal in life is to share the love of Jesus Christ with as many faces as possible!
What was senior year in high school like for you?
BUSY. I was extremely busy my senior year of high school because I was maintaining my valedictorian position, taking dual credit classes, and involved in just about every opportunity I could find. I submitted my application to A&M in August, so that I could focus on everything else once the school year started. I missed out on many weekends of resting or hanging out with friends because I was out of town competing in a contest, at a livestock show, or leading an event, and although at the time it often got tiring, I wouldn’t trade those times for the world. I am so thankful my parents pushed me like they did to be the best I could be and get the most out of my opportunities during my senior year.
What was/is your favorite part about college?
My favorite part about college was meeting people from so many different walks of life. I truly enjoyed meeting as many new people as possible through different organizations, internships, opportunity, classes, and jobs! Those people you meet in college not only become your best friends but also have such an influence on who you truly become.
Were you involved in extracurricular activities in college? If so, what?
I was heavily involved with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Council, serving as an officer for 3 of my 4 years on the team. I was also involved in the Saddle and Sirloin Club, Aggie Relay for Life, Freshman Leadership Experience, and Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow. I held a part-time job with AgriLife Extension for all four years of undergrad, and completed many internships with livestock shows and media companies across the state. Being as involved as possible was certainly not something that stopped after I left high school!
What are some characteristics that are important to you? How have they influenced you throughout your school career?
A strong sense of determination and my faith impacted both my undergraduate and graduate degree careers. College doesn’t get easier as you go along; in fact, it’s quite the opposite. Juggling graduate school and a full time job is a daunting task, but my determination to reach my personal goals and resting on my faith in God has pulled me through thus far and I know it will continue to do so through next May.
What is difference between San Augustine and your college town?
There’s quite a substantial size difference between the two towns! I had more people in my first college class than in SAHS as a whole! You could enjoy a new experience every single day in Bryan/College Station and still not run out of things to do before something new is built, whereas in San Augustine, we all know that’s not exactly the case. In SA, you create your experiences and here, they are readily available for you to enjoy.
What do you miss about San Augustine?
The small town vibe is something you don’t truly appreciate until you’ve left it. Often growing up I saw it as a burden to live in such a quaint town, but now I often miss the simple way of life and comfort you can only find in a small East Texas town.
Is there something that you will always remember from your years in high school?
I will never forget the people. High school is tough. It’s not an easy four years for anyone – no matter where you’re from or who you are. While my peers and teachers sometimes seemed like the biggest challenge I would ever face, I have now realized that those peers and teachers made a great impact on who I am today and I am grateful for every experience. I will always be thankful for the people that surrounded me for those four years at SAHS!
What did you learn from SAHS that you continue to use today?
While a student at SAHS, I wanted to “put our little school on the map”! I worked as hard as I possibly could to excel in everything I did and got involved in as much as I could to make that happen. I still have that mindset as I go forth in graduate school and in my career path. I am now proud to say that I am from San Augustine, Texas, and the dedication I had to my town during high school has heavily influenced that sense of pride I feel towards my hometown.
What college/career advice would you give to the current students of SAHS?
There are so many opportunities – trade school, universities, workforce training centers, the list goes on. Find your passion and chase it with all you have! There is no reason that a graduate from SAHS should question their next step after high school. The town of San Augustine is incredibly supportive and wants to see their students succeed. Whether it’s a college degree or directly entering the workforce and chasing a career goal, just do something valuable with your life while you’re young. Do not let finances be a burden. Reach out to adults around you and use your resources to find scholarships if needed. There is an opportunity for everyone – you just have to have a little determination to find yours. Find your passion and never stop pursuing it!
Callie currently works for the Texas 4-H Youth Development Program as a Marketing and Communications Specialist in College Station, Texas.
Article conducted by SAHS student Isabella Tuite.