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  • Last modified 86 days ago (July 26, 2018)

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Grad sees future in counseling and firefighting

Staff writer

After initially thinking about going into architecture, Bailey Penner of Peabody figured out that he wanted to be a high school counselor.

His counselor, Ken Parry, convinced him early in high school to change his path.

“He helped me realize I am better with people than in building,” Bailey said.

He loved playing football and graduated this spring at the top of his class at Peabody-Burns High School.

Bailey plans to enroll this fall at Emporia State University and major in psychology with a minor in coaching. He hopes to earn a masters in psychology in 3½ years, after which he will be qualified to fulfill his dream. He also wants to become a football coach.

“I always work at understanding people and not rushing to judgment,” he said.

Not satisfied with his academic goals, Bailey also has trained to be a firefighter during summer months.

In addition to joining the local fire department, he received a “red card” this summer to become a wildland fire fighter for U.S. Forest Service. The card lists his credentials and level of training.

He took classes at a Colorado fire camp in Salida. The training culminated in a “pack” test, in which he was required to walk three miles in 45 minutes with 45 pounds on his back.

“I was out of breath a few times, but I beat the 45 minutes,” he said.

His parents, Mark and Kelly Penner, own a small ranch outside of Peabody.

Last modified July 26, 2018

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