Livestock showmen receive N.C. State Fair scholarships

Youth who show livestock know the importance of being focused. They focus on making their animal look its best. They focus on the judge and catching their eye. These youth focus on the prize, on improvement and on the future shows, ribbons and animals. Livestock youth are also focused on their future careers and education.

For many youth, just as much hard work goes into school work and grades as it does to prepare their animals for show. The N.C. State Fair Junior Livestock Educational Scholarship combines school, livestock, and future aspirations all into one.

The scholarship program looks at a youth’s involvement in N.C. State Fair livestock shows, academic achievement, an essay, and their overall resume. Any young people who have shown livestock at the N.C. State Fair are eligible to apply for the N.C. State Fair Junior Livestock Educational Scholarship.

The scholarship program provides a unique opportunity for youth to be rewarded for both showing livestock and doing well in school. With the increasing price tag of college, this scholarship eases a massive burden for these youth and their families.

This year, 28 recipients were given $2,000 scholarships and 2 were given $3,500 premier scholarships. These youth were recently recognized at the Got to Be NC Festival. Recipients joined Commissioner Troxler at the festival to be honored for their achievements. Recipients and their families joined the Commissioner on a tractor parade that wound its way through the festival. Recipients also got a chance to catch up with each other and enjoy the sights at the festival.

The premier scholarships were sponsored by Carolina Farm Credit and were announced at the Got to Be NC Festival to Tristen Fulton of Davidson County and Regan Mitchem of Lincoln County.

The N.C. State Fair provides more than ribbons or a few days of livestock shows. It invests in the futures of those who enter the show ring. Livestock and the Fair impacts individuals long after the day of the show.

“Showing livestock has brought so many blessings into my life. It brought me some of the closest friends that are considered family. It taught me so many important life lessons such as respect, time management, work ethic, and teamwork,” said Megan Lawing, a 2019 scholarship recipient.

Megan said that this is just the tip of the iceberg. It also led her to her career choice of becoming a nurse in labor and delivery. Lambing sparked that passion and desire to pursue a career in that field of nursing. Not only did it inspire her, but livestock has put her through college.

“Every premium money I received was saved for my college fund. It has also provided scholarships,” Megan said.

The stories of how showing livestock has helped North Carolina youth are endless, and this scholarship program is just one more way the N.C. State Fair is impacting folks positively.

The scholarships are made possible thanks to the proceeds of N.C. State Fair Sale of Champions. Any money the sale brings in is divided into different areas:

60% of the auction total is awarded to the individual NC State Fair Jr. Livestock Show Champions as:

             — 60% of their proceeds as cash award

             — 40% of their proceeds as contributions to a NC 529 or approved educational investment plan.

30% of the auction total supports the scholarship program open to all N.C. State Fair youth livestock exhibitors.

10% of the auction total supports youth livestock programs and activities across North Carolina.

This year’s NC State Fair Scholarship recipients are:

Kali MabeStokes
Allison HartmanStokes
Rachel Brown Stokes
Makensie MohrfeldLenoir
Ethan ThompsonWilson
Caley MayoNash
Taylor GloverWayne
Jordan McAninchBuncombe
Reagan GlassBeaufort
Megan LawingCaldwell
Madison BoydDavidson
Lawton LooperBuncombe
Tristen FultonHarnett
Tucker WorleyLincoln
Mason BlinsonIredell
Regan MitchemDavidson
Emil HollandRandolph
Abigail FultonJohsnton
Laura LeGlueRutherford
Cecilia FrickeCumberland
Lauren MurrayJohnston
John Richard FaatzRutherford
Kelsey BentleyJohnston
Cara SmithGuilford
Melanie FishelForsyth
Joseph MooreFranklin
Wyatt KendallSampson
Nelson “Mycai” BrooksAlamance
Leah ThomasYadkin
Jordan Cox-O’NeillJones

Congratulations to all recipients! We so admire your hard work, dedication, passion, and future aspirations. We can’t wait to see what you will accomplish. See you at the fair!

About Marisa Linton See

Marisa grew up showing and raising livestock in NC. She has shown animals at the N.C. State Fair for 15 years and is a past youth livestock scholarship recipient. She is an N.C. State University graduate, agricultural photographer and blogger.

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