The Last Ride

Megan Newsome has always loved riding horses but has found an outlet for her passion through her programs of study, agribusiness and animal science.

The sun is rising and Megan Newsome is up and ready to care for horses nearly 100 miles away from her hometown of Pikeville, the place that ignited her equestrian passion.

Megan is a Morehead State University senior who studies agribusiness and animal science. Megan spends much of her time at the 350-acre university farmbut realizes her future career may not entail brushing or trotting horses around an arena. "I don't really want to sit behind a desk, but that's the start of good jobs in the industry," Megan says.

Before sunrise, Megan makes her commute from the Derrickson Agricultural Complex to Morehead State University’s main campus for an 8 a.m. class.

Ribbons earned by the MSU Equestrian team hang in a case at the barn on the Derrickson Agricultural Complex grounds.

Megan would eventually like to work for the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the U.S. Equestrian Federation. "If it all falls into place that I'm training horses for the rest of my life, that's OK too," Megan says.

With graduation in the spring, Megan has started to prepare for life beyond MSU with her high school sweetheart of eight years, Dylan Tackett, who took a job in Louisville last year. Megan realizes that she could be exposed to more opportunities outside of her hometown and plans to join Dylan in Louisville.

Megan and a classmate, Justice, prepare for their class at 8 a.m.

"I feel like I'm doing myself a favor and doing the people that raised me a favor by going out in the world and trying to do something to benefit myself," Megan says.

Megan's mom, Tabitha Newsome, says she can tell her daughter has gained independence since attending MSU, a dream she's had since she was little.

"I would put her up against anyone, male or female, when it comes to being a hard worker," Tabitha says.

Megan Newsome (left), Audrey Emery and McKenzee Newton belt out the lyrics, "He ain't seen me crazy yet," from Miranda Lambert's hit song "Gunpowder and Lead." Megan and McKenzee are often inseparable and call themselves "Thelma and Louise."

Megan rubs her eyes and prepares herself for a long day of work ahead.

After graduation, Megan's distance from Pikeville will double.

"I love home, but home's always there," Megan says. "The same people may not be there and things might be different, but home is always going to be home. If it's 10 days from now or 10 years from now it's always going to be there."

During her afternoon riding class, Morehead State University senior Megan Newsome goofs off with Lady after practicing with her around the arena. "Lady is different from other horses in that she's really strong and really fast," Megan says. "She's much harder to signal than other horses."

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