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Treva Henio said she was inspired to pursue a degree in range science after working for nearly 10 years as the manager of a veterinary hospital and witnessing cases of livestock diagnosed with plant toxicity and poor nutrition due to exposure to toxic plant species and the lack of good forage pastures.
The New Mexico State University student is one step closer to her goal of helping the community in her native Navajo Nation tackle natural resource challenges with a $1,000 John Werner Scholarship awarded to Henio by the New Mexico Soil and Water Conservation Society.
"It is an honor and a true blessing to receive this scholarship for New Mexico State University," Henio said. "Once I earn my degree, I want to go back to my reservation and help my people, as well as farmers and ranchers to rehabilitate the land, conserve water and rehabilitate the amount of grazing occurring."
Henio is set to graduate in December with a bachelor's degree in range science and a minor in livestock production.
The SWCS is a nonprofit scientific and educational organization that serves as an advocate for conservation professionals and for science-based conservation practice, programs and policy.
The scholarship she received is named for John Earl Werner, a devoted conservationist who was a member of SWCS. Werner was a district conservationist in the Albuquerque field office for what is now known as the Natural Resources Conservation Service. He died in 1993.
Each year, the New Mexico SWCS awards a scholarship to one New Mexico student who is working towards a degree in a conservation-related field.
Henio has experience working as a student with the Summer Temporary Employment Program with the Natural Resource Conservation Service for the past two summers in Arizona. While there, she spent time focusing on natural resource management.
Henio said her goal is to obtain a position as a district conservationist with the Natural Resource Conservation Service and focus her work on finding the most efficient way to conserve water and repair damaged soil.
Laurie Abbott, Henio's advisor and an associate professor in NMSU's Department of Animal and Range Sciences, said Henio's dedication makes her a worthy choice for this honor.
"Treva is very deserving. She's always been a very hardworking student and really takes what she's learning and puts it into the context of land management," she said. "Treva is someone who takes her education seriously and has a forward-looking vision of what she wants and where she fits into the overall plan. She has a plan and is following her dream."
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