Future scholars tour university

Audrey Denney
Audrey Denney

High school seniors from across California got a taste of the College of Agriculture Thursday.

Thirty-two students interested in studying agriculture from 25 high schools attended the Bell Memorial Presidential Scholarship Recruitment Day, said Audrey Denney, the outreach coordinator at the College of Agriculture. Academic advisers at each high school chose students interested and eligible for the scholarship to attend the event.

Chico State can grant the Bell Family Presidential Scholarship because of a $2 million endowment given to the College of Agriculture at Chico State, wrote Jennifer Fox, the dean of the College of Agriculture, in an email to The Orion. The grant is awarded to outstanding high school seniors who have enrolled in the university’s agriculture department.

Recipients of the grant who maintain a 3.5 GPA or higher and stay within the agriculture program at Chico State will be given $5,000 a year for four years, she wrote. It is intended for students who complete their degree in four years.

“We will have two awards next year and the year after, but the goal is to have a total of four Bell Family Presidential Scholars in each freshman class, so there will be a total of 16 on campus at any one time,” Fox wrote.

The recruitment day was aimed to expose high-achieving students to Chico State’s offerings, Denney said. The agenda included a department presentation, a campus tour and a tour of Chico State’s farm.

“We are doing this to show the Chico experience, and if they see themselves coming here then we would like them to attend,” she said.

Chico State students toured with the high school seniors and answered their questions, advising them on different aspects of Chico.

“It seems like they can be really good, they’ll fit really well and do really well,” said Terra Gibson, a junior agriculture student.

Some of the high school students at the recruitment day said they were engaged by the campus visit.

One of the students interested in the agriculture program was Kayla Huckaby, a senior at Summerville Union High School in Tuolumne, Calif.

“I’m impressed,” Huckaby said. “The campus is gorgeous, the WREC is huge, and I’m very impressed with the farm. I’m planning on getting into the animal science program here and starting my vet studies at Chico.”


Nathan Lehmann can be reached at [email protected] or @theorion_news on Twitter.