Caroline Creech was in Texas in January, Kansas in February, and Scotland, Wales and England earlier this month, and not for vacation.
But the trips weren’t all business for the N.C. State University junior, who is studying animal science. She went on all those trips and others before because of her affinity with cattle.
Creech, the daughter of Tony and Allyson Creech, raises and sells Santa Getrudis and is venturing into other breeds at her family farm south of Zebulon.
“I just really enjoy it and like raising cattle, to eat and to show,” said Creech, a 2013 Corinth Holders High graduate. “Agriculture is very important to the country and to North Carolina’s economy, so it’s important to keep producing to keep feeding the growing population.”
Allyson Creech said her daughter has taken ownership of her work at the farm and beyond ever since cattle became her passion as a young teen.
“She’s very involved in it and very accomplished for a young woman that’s 20 years old,” she said. “She knows what she wants to do.”
Caroline Creech is one of 14 district leaders that make up the National Junior Santa Gertrudis Association board of directors. The district she represents covers the Carolinas, Florida, Georgia and Tennessee.
“We’ll write articles for the national magazine and work the rings in the national shows – help make sure cows are moving in and out and help the show run so the judge can do his job faster,” she said.
Those were her duties at the National Santa Gertrudis show in Fort Worth in January.
In mid-February, she joined others in the N.C. Farm Bureau Young Farmers & Ranchers program at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Young Farmers & Ranchers Leadership Conference in Kansas City.
The YF&R program provides young adults with opportunities to build leadership skills and exposes them to current agricultural issues. The national conference draws together hundreds of members for a weekend that includes motivational speakers, small group sessions, networking, tours of local agricultural operations and competitions.
From March 3-13, a college class called Global Food System and Sustainable Agriculture sent her on an educational journey across the big pond.
“We studied a little bit of everything,” Creech said. “We toured different farms and went to a university. We learned all different sectors of agriculture in Scotland, Wales, and England.”
Creech is also part of the livestock judging team at N.C. State, and she has remained active as an alumni member of Future Farmers of America at Corinth Holders, where she was a three-year officer and two-time FFA member of the year in high school.
Years of dedication to that group led to her being awarded the American FFA Degree in October, 2015 in Louisville, Ky. The degree is awarded to FFA members who show the highest level of commitment to the organization and make significant accomplishments in supervised agricultural experiences.
“You have to have five years of recording your supervised agricultural experience, from the time you start FFA in high school on into college,” Creech said. “You have to apply for it, but you have to prove you’ve done so much work, have so much money in it and got so much money out of it.”
The specific field for Creech’s entry was beef cattle; how she raises and sells them.