SJR STATE ALUMNI SPOTLIGHTS
Callie Brauman – (2017)
Livestock Product Specialist
Each month, St. Johns River State College will honor one of its own in an alumni salute, celebrating the career milestones, community contributions and personal reflections of those who began their collegiate journey as SJR State Vikings.
CALLIE, WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO STUDY AT SJR STATE?
St. Johns River State College is a great college in my hometown that allowed me to graduate, with honors, obtaining my Associate of Arts degree while living at home and working. I applied and received an academic scholarship to SJR State during my senior year. With other local scholarships along with this one, I was able to finish my degree, debt-free, while saving money to pay for future expenses.
WHAT DID YOU DO AFTER GRADUATING FROM SJR STATE?
I attended the University of Florida (graduated in 2020) where I worked as a student worker at the Beef Teaching Unit and completed my Bachelor’s in Animal Sciences Biology with a minor in Agribusiness Management. After graduation, I moved to Louisiana to work for Purina Animal Nutrition at a co-op location called Kentwood Co-Op. I have worked for them for two years now, and I love my job.
I just started my master’s degree at Kansas State University. I still travel back and forth between Florida and Louisiana to help my family with our cattle company as well as our other businesses.
PLEASE TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOUR CAREER PATH AND WHAT YOU FIND MOST REWARDING ABOUT YOUR WORK.
I am a livestock product specialist for Purina. I get to spend every day out in God’s creation meeting with individuals who have animals and would like my nutritional advice. I love riding along with cattle producers to look at their herds and listen to them speak about the things they love. It is so rewarding to me when I am able to make suggestions that help make them more productive and profitable. My first year of my position I was awarded as a top salesperson for the company, as well as Rookie of the Year. The award that I received is only for first-year employees who are in the top sales category. In that category, one individual was selected out of the nation based on recommendations and a board’s decisions.
WHAT DID YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT BEING A STUDENT AT SJR STATE, AND WHAT/WHO IMPACTED YOU THE MOST DURING THAT TIME?
During my time at SJR State, I enjoyed attending sporting events, being a student worker, and being an officer in student government.
Caroline Tingle, SJR State’s VP for Development, was very influential in my life, not only at the college, but as a role model in every aspect. I worked in her office as a student worker, and later nannied her daughter for several years. She helped me make many life decisions and gave me a lot of great advice. I still consider her one of the most influential women in my life.
WHAT DID YOU FIND MOST CHALLENGING DURING YOUR STUDIES AT THE COLLEGE?
Calculus was a very difficult course for me and required a lot of additional work in order to complete it with the grade I needed for my bachelor’s program at the University of Florida.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO THOSE CONTEMPLATING ENROLLING AT SJR STATE?
It is a very encouraging and helpful environment to begin your college experience. There are many people available to help you succeed, and the resources provided by the College are unlimited.
IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE THAT YOU’D LIKE TO ADD ABOUT YOUR ACADEMIC AND/OR CAREER JOURNEY?
My original plan for my career was completely different than what I do today. Throughout my education experience, I learned about my true passion for the cattle industry and agriculture industry as a whole. It’s important to be open-minded about your passions, education and career choices. I had many obstacles along the way, but hard work, my faith, and my loved ones are what have gotten me to where I am. I’ve got plenty more to accomplish—I’m not done yet.
ARE YOU AN SJR STATE ALUMNUS?
Click on the link below to share your recent accomplishments and join the SJR State Alumni Association today - we'd love to hear from you!