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Makayla Stewart

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Bio

My name is Makayla Stewart and I am attending The University of Tennessee at Martin. I am passionate about agriculture and my long-term goal is to become a veterinarian and help my rural community by educating youth and smaller farms in my area on nutrition and animal care. I believe this will be a way I can give back to my community once I earn my DVM. I recently graduated as the class of 2023's salutatorian and received numerous awards and scholarships based on my academic performance and commitment to community service due to my GPA and ACT score UTMartin waived my out-of-state tuition cost, which allowed me to pursue a degree in Veterinary Science and Technology. This is considered a pre-vet degree and will prepare me for application into a veterinary science program anywhere in the country. I began preparing for my future by taking honors classes, online classes through my school, and several early college classes through our local university. Due to my dedication and hard work, I was able to enter as a first-time freshman with 38 college credit hours. This early collegiate success helped me make a smooth transition into college and I am now entering my second semester at The University of Tennessee at Martin. I was recently invited to join the Collegiate Honor Society and am classified as a sophomore.

Education

The University of Tennessee-Martin

Bachelor's degree program
2023 - 2026
  • Majors:
    • Veterinary/Animal Health Technologies/Technicians

Lexington High School

High School
2010 - 2023

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

    Doctoral degree program (PhD, MD, JD, etc.)

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Veterinary/Animal Health Technologies/Technicians
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Veterinary

    • Dream career goals:

    • Veterinary Tech

      Veterinary Clinic
      2022 – Present2 years

    Sports

    Track & Field

    Varsity
    2021 – Present3 years

    Volleyball

    Varsity
    2018 – Present6 years

    Awards

    • All county team

    Public services

    • Volunteering

      Homeless ministry, Key Club, FFA, HOSA — Volunteer
      2020 – 2023

    Future Interests

    Volunteering

    Philanthropy

    Entrepreneurship

    Minecraft Forever Fan Scholarship
    Minecraft has always been a favorite game of mine. The ability to craft whatever you want with little creative limitations is what makes Minecraft a great game for many different people. Over the years, I have created many different worlds with many different creations. Whenever I create a new world, my first objective is to look for a flat piece of land with enough space to build a cozy home with a perfect farm. In my mind, a perfect farm includes all the crops one can harvest and animals: cows, pigs, sheep, and chickens. I would normally build a stable to house all my horses, donkeys, mules, and maybe even llamas. I normally use a mix of materials, including spruce, oak, stone, cobblestone, and lanterns, to create a rustic kind of look that I absolutely love. I think the reason I always try to build a beautiful farmhouse is because that is what I want in real life. My dream home would be a decent-sized white house with dark wood accents. I want to have my own perfect little farm with any and all animals, plus a big garden, to be able to feed my family. I would have a dirt road leading to my house with trees and bushes on either side. My dream home comes from the way I was raised: on a farm surrounded by nature. I try to imagine my future through my creations in Minecraft, which normally look similar but may be built in different biomes, giving off different feelings each time.
    Athletics Scholarship
    I started my athletic career early with one of my first sports being softball. I think I must have been four years old when I started playing. I learned so much in those early years and looked forward to seeing my teammates at practices and games. I think I ate my weight in sunflower seeds over the years and possibly ate too many pickle sickles from the concession stand as well. I didn’t know the benefits of the sport when I was younger, but I can see them now that I am older, especially when I observe younger kids who have no discipline. Sports at an early age gave me the discipline I needed and taught me how to work as a team player. I think this was a critical skill that has helped me so successful as a high school and now college student. As I got older I branched out and left the sport of softball behind. I loved it but was eager to try something new. I began playing basketball and volleyball during my 6th-grade year. These sports were both so fast-paced and I loved them. I loved learning how to work with teammates using different skills than I had with softball. There were more physical practices to become strong and flexible. This is something that has become a lifelong habit. I enjoy working out and staying healthy. Many high school athletes continue to stay active long after their sports careers are over. Since the workouts were more physical, I began to notice changes in my body as I entered junior high, which helped with my self-esteem and confidence. Entering high school, I decided to drop basketball, it just wasn’t my sport. I continued with volleyball through my senior year of high school but also picked up track and field during my 10th through 12th-grade years. I enjoyed volleyball and was a hitter since I was one of the taller girls on the team. I wasn’t a starter every year and some years I even played down. This taught me humility and I can remember games in which I just sat on the bench, depending on our opponents. I remember my mother telling me that my job on those days was to cheer my teammates on. Sports taught me how to be a leader as I got older, and many of the younger athletes looked up to me. I continue to use those leadership skills throughout life across all settings. I also think sports taught me how to deal with conflict. Oh my goodness can there be drama on and off the court? I also found out that your teammates can just be teammates, it’s ok if they aren’t your friends. What a valuable lesson to be ok with not being everyone's favorite, and also being kind when someone isn’t your favorite person. I have often heard people put down sports and parents that let their children play sports, because of the long practices and late school nights. One thing my mom pointed out one year at an awards day was that those top students being recognized for all A’s and B’s were all athletes. They were the students who had involved parents, even if they were spending all night in a gym or on a field. I think the biggest way sports have positively impacted my life was by allowing me to see what involved and committed parenting looked like for me to do the same one day.
    Inguz Memorial Scholarship
    Did you know that Pygmy goats can be raised as companion animals? My favorite animals are goats, but I’m not sure I would consider them companion animals. They are some of the easiest animals to raise and are suitable for most climates. I began my Pygmy goat herd when I was thirteen years old. I’m sure the typical birthday request is not for goats, but it was for me. I love a variety of animals and have been raised on a farm all of my life. Being raised on a farm in a rural community led me to my career choice of becoming a veterinarian. I enjoy being outside and caring for the animals on our farm. I also had the opportunity to work in a vet clinic setting, which furthered my desire to become a veterinarian. I enjoy taking care of animals' needs and helping them figure out what they need to become healthier and also happier. I believe that our interactions with animals help our mental health too. Nobody is ever as glad to see me as my blonde lab, “Koda” when I get home from work. Working with animals is not always easy, especially when you are a full-time student and involved in a lot of extracurricular activities. I tried hard to balance my duties on the farm and also stay active in my school and community. I graduated from a small 2A school in Lexington, Alabama. I was recognized as the class Salutatorian for our graduating class. I am entering my second semester at UTM with a GPA of 3.8, and have recently been invited to join the Collegiate Honor Society, which was only sent to 160 students. My current classification is a sophomore, due to entering UTM with 38 credit hours from dual credit courses in high school. I have remained active with community and club involvement while at UTM and have joined the following organizations and clubs: Baptist Collegiate Ministry, Cattlemen’s Association, Block and Bridle Club, Vet Science and Technology Club, and Collegiate FFA. During my high school career I had several community service experiences such as a Special Olympics volunteer, Walk to End Alzheimer’s, Vacation Bible School, and FFA farm day, among many more. I served in several officer positions and received many awards and honors to represent my class. I was the FFA secretary during my 11th and 12th grade years. I was also the vice president for the National Technical Honor Society and the Senior Class vice president. I was also a member of the varsity volleyball team and the varsity track and field team. I guess you can say college life has been a lot slower for me than high school was. Especially since I am living on campus and don’t have the same responsibilities that I did on the farm. Living on a farm and interacting with animals daily taught me a lot of compassion and how to put my needs first. I believe it would be hard to become a veterinarian if you could not show compassion for what animals are going through. Animals are the funniest to observe and be around, they always favor the person who feeds them, they can recognize the sound of your car coming down the driveway, and they will follow you with a bucket anywhere you go. I think my desire to become a veterinarian is solely because I have taken care of my livestock and pets all of my life. I know without a doubt becoming a veterinarian is the right choice for me.
    Kevin Boblenz Scholarship
    I was a week old when I went to my first livestock show on the fair circuit. My older siblings were showing Boer goats, and my parents took me too. I am the fourth of five children and we live on a 40-acre farm in Northwest Alabama. My family has raised pretty much everything. Our latest, and favorite livestock to raise, breed, and sell, are registered Black Angus, and Pygymy goats. My name is Makayla Stewart, and because of my rural lifestyle and a lifetime of hard work, I believe I will be successful in my pursuit of becoming a veterinarian. I graduated from a small 2A school in Lexington, Alabama. I was recognized as the class Salutatorian for our graduating class. I am entering my second semester at UTM with a GPA of 3.8, and have recently been invited to join the Collegiate Honor Society, which was only sent to 160 students. My current classification is a sophomore, due to entering UTM with 38 credit hours from dual credit courses in high school. I have remained active with community and club involvement while at UTM and have joined the following organizations and clubs: Baptist Collegiate Ministry, Cattlemen’s Association, Block and Bridle Club, Vet Science and Technology Club, and Collegiate FFA. During my high school career I had several community service experiences such as a Special Olympics volunteer, Walk to End Alzheimer’s, Vacation Bible School, and FFA farm day, among many more. I served in several officer positions and received many awards and honors to represent my class. I was the FFA secretary during my 11th and 12th grade years. I was also the vice president for the National Technical Honor Society and the Senior Class vice president. I was also a member of the varsity volleyball team and the varsity track and field team. I believe that my agricultural background helped build my work ethic, both academically and at home. Throughout my life, I have always had additional things on the farm to do, even though I might have had practice until 5 pm, or had summer workouts. There are no off days when you have livestock. Farming is not an easy life, but it is rewarding. My decision to become a veterinarian was something I have always wanted to do. I know how challenging it can be when parasites or environmental problems arise. I hope to make a difference in my rural area and help educate youth like myself who might have their own herds. I have built a reputation as a goat producer and have several repeat customers due to their quality. I believe that educating people and helping them be successful with nutrition, and also pasture care and rotation can help make an impact on our small community. It can also give youth an opportunity to create their own income, which is crucial in a rural area. I also would like to help through my future vet practice. Several vets have stopped seeing large animals and gone strictly to small animals. I have been fortunate to work through high school with a vet that sees both. I hope to continue giving back to my community by helping small farms and farmers like me.