Introducing Payden Smith, Our 2014 FFA Scholarship Winner

Payden Smith

Payden Smith

Red Barn Media Group is proud to announce awarding a $1,000 scholarship to Payden Smith of Holly Pond, Ala., through the National FFA Collegiate Scholarship Program.

In 2014, the National FFA Organization awarded $2.2 million in scholarships to more than 1,700 students. Scholarships are sponsored by businesses and individuals through the National FFA Foundation and are awarded based on FFA involvement, work experience, Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE), community service, leadership skills, and academics. This is the third year Red Barn has sponsored a scholarship through the program.

“Red Barn is proud to support our future leaders with this scholarship,” said Owner and Publisher Bruce Thomas. “FFA members are some of the most relentlessly positive young men and women you will ever meet. They are active, optimistic, and passionate about preserving the future of farming and rural America. We wanted to be a part of that process by encouraging that enthusiasm.”

Payden is the son of Sheila and Mitchell Smith (DVM) and recently graduated from Holly Pond High School, where he had a 4.0 grade point average. He is an active leader in the Holly Pond High School FFA, most recently serving as chapter president. He has competed in cattle shows statewide for 10 years through 4-H and FFA. Smith was a member of his high school cross-country team and currently is training for his first marathon. His ultimate goal is to compete in the Boston Marathon.

Payden will attend Wallace State Community College and then Auburn University, where he will major in animal sciences and pursue a degree in veterinary medicine. After college and vet school, Payden plans to return to Holly Pond and join his father’s veterinary practice, which specializes in the treatment of both large and small animals. “I am extremely grateful for the scholarship support,” says Payden. “I have seen how vital this kind of veterinary practice is to a small community.”

Payden’s father’s practice is one of the largest in the state of Alabama, and Red Barn was impressed with Payden’s desire to serve the community where he grew up. “I have never even wanted to work in larger cities,” he says. He’s never wanted to do anything but vet school, either, in spite of the challenges. “I have 7 years of college to look forward to. I know this is a narrow road but it is only through the generosity of businesses such as Red Barn Media Group that I can realize my dreams and goals.”

Congratulations to Payden!