While many students plan for post-graduation summer trips and menial jobs to save money for the fall, Brookesmith valedictorian Ryder Nelson and salutatorian Chyna Allgood have much different plans.
Nelson and Allgood each plan to jump right into their perspective career path with Nelson joining a summer program through the 3M plant in Brownwood while Allgood will take summer classes with plans to study forensic nursing.
“It’s bittersweet. I want to move on, but I don’t want to leave home,” Nelson said. “…Everybody knows everybody (at BHS). Most of us have stayed together. The other classes have split apart. I’ve known [Allgood] since kindergarten, but the other ones came in in elementary and junior high and we’ve all stayed together since then.”
Nelson will go on to study industrial maintenance at TSTC in Abilene while Allgood will attend Howard Payne University to study nursing. Nelson and Allgood each attended Brookesmith ISD since kindergarten and remained friends for 13 years. With both competing for valedictorian, neither Nelson nor Allgood let the competition get to them.
“It was very close. We’re good friends so I didn’t care if I got valedictorian or salutatorian. I was fine with it either way,” Nelson said.
Nelson is the son of Tony and Juakana Nelson. While a student he participated in: 4H, basketball, football, track and tennis. While attending TSTC, Nelson plans to work alongside his father at the 3M plant in Brownwood as part of a summer program.
“I will work and get paid. I will learn some stuff and do some stuff they do not want to do,” Nelson said. “As long as you’re going to college and it’s something of worth to them, then you can enter their summer program if you have a parent of guardian that works for them. I want to do the same thing as my dad.”
Allgood is the daughter of Buda and Rena Allgood. While at BHS, she participated in: cross country, track, tennis and thespian society. She said she chose nursing because her family has an extensive history of nursing professionals.
“It’s working with the deceased and finding out how they died,” Allgood said. “All of my family has done nursing so I just wanted to follow in their footsteps.”