As a student at Midway High School, Clay Honeycutt doesn’t have a lot of free time. When he’s not attending classes or studying, the volunteer firefighter is putting out blazes, helping victims or lending a hand on the family farm.
“I put a lot of work into it and I have to have good time management skills to keep everything in order,” Honeycutt said. “Sometimes I have to write little notes, keep them in my truck or somewhere in my pocket.”
The dedication to his community and academics throughout his high school years resulted in a full ride to North Carolina State University. Honeycutt recently earned the Park Scholarship, a four-year scholarship based on accomplishments, potential in scholarship, leadership, service and character. It’s named after the late Roy H. Park, an NC State alumnus who created the Park Foundation, which is dedicated to the support of education, media and the environment.
The senior is the son of Chad and Martha Honeycutt. At Midway, serves FFA as the organization’s president, competes on the varsity golf team and is a member of the Beta Club, an organization focused on promoting ideals of academic achievement, character, leadership and service.
“For the past four years I worked really hard and kept up with my studies,” Honeycutt said while speaking about the Park program. “It’s not only based on good academic standing, but a thorough community service project.”
As a member of the Spivey’s Corner Volunteer Dire Department, he gained about 350 hours of community service through the emergency organization. His father, Chad, is first lieutenant and some of his friends volunteer their time too.
Honeycutt plans to major in biological and agricultural engineering at NC State.
“My dad graduated from State and I’ve known since second grade that I was going to NC State,” he said. “I grew up on a rural farm and with the ag school there, I knew I wanted to do something in agriculture. Also, I wanted to do something in engineering, so I knew that was the place for me.”
His father studied at the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences and is currently involved in poultry production.
“It’s fun and really enjoyable,” Honeycutt said. “We used to have row crops and it’s nice to see growth through the season with all the hard work you put into it.”
After completing his university studies, Honeycutt wants to design farm equipment or become involved with the technology aspect of agriculture.
“I like the fact that there’s not a lot of farmers in the world, but they produce the food for everyone,” he said. “By helping farmers by designing different farm equipment we can produce more yields that needed for the world.”
College Adviser Sarah Haas said Honeycutt was very passionate about going to NC State and becoming involved with engineering. She added that thousands of students apply from all over the country for the competitive scholarship and the selections are narrowed down to less than 100.
“He’s a very special student and other students look up to him,” Haas said. “He’s somebody that everyone in the school respects very greatly. When he got it, we where all celebrating with him. It was really an exciting time, not just for him, but for the entire school, because he made us very proud.”