The award Gives Recognition for Outstanding Work to middle and high school students who demonstrate leadership and excellence inside and outside the classroom.
“I congratulate Carolyn Swize for earning the GROW award,” Commissioner Staples said. “The future of our great state rests in the hands of students like Carolyn who embody the character and work ethic that will continue to keep Texas at the forefront of today’s competitive global economy.”
Swize was chosen as this month’s GROW recipient for demonstrating leadership in her school activities, as well as her commitment to community service. Swize is involved in the National Honor Society, Texas Family Career and Community Leaders of America and as an athletic trainer. She also is a member of FFA, serves as the parliamentarian of her school’s 4-H club, raises goats and heifers for the Goliad County Fair and is a delegate on the county council.
As a part of Swize’s FFA Supervised Agricultural Experience project, she has developed a portable aquaponic greenhouse that grows vegetables without soil, relying on water fortified with nutrients from fish waste. She plans to take the project to Agricultural Mechanics shows in Houston, San Antonio and San Angelo.
Additionally, Swize is the Luminary Chair for Goliad County’s Relay for Life Council, where she helps raise money to support and honor cancer patients. She has been an individual $1,000 fundraiser for the past three years, and her 4-H Relay for Life team has won gold, silver and bronze recognition for their contributions in Goliad County.
"Thank you for recognizing my service to my community and to my world,” Swize said. “I am honored to receive this award."
Swize also volunteers at her church during the Festival of Joy, cemetery clean-ups and Vacation Bible School. Other volunteer activities include raising money to send supplies to the military and devoting many hours of community service to Silver Santa and Sag Stop.
“Carolyn exemplifies excellence in academics, service to community and church,” said Debbie Henning, counselor at Goliad High School. “Her interests demonstrate that she is committed to making the world a better place. I wholeheartedly nominate Carolyn for your prestigious GROW award.”
Swize plans to attend Texas A&M University next fall and major in ecological restoration with a minor in environmental geosciences.
Commissioner Staples established the GROW award to celebrate outstanding student leaders who demonstrate excellence in either their academic or extracurricular activities. To nominate a promising middle or high school student, visit the TDA website at TexasAgriculture.gov.
One GROW award winner is chosen monthly. Nominations for next month’s award are due Dec. 1.