• Last modified 2191 days ago (July 26, 2018)


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