Herd after High School: Alumni update with ’12 grad Nathan Towery


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PINPOINT PRECISION: As a high school wrestling referee, Carlisle High School Alumni Nathan Towery gets up close and personal. After volunteering to help make wrestling a sanctioned sport in Mississippi, Towery was offered the opportunity to continue this passion.

In this new recurring series, we will be interviewing alumni to learn more about what they’ve been doing since graduating from CHS. If you are interested in being interviewed, please complete the form below.

Nathan Towery attended Carlisle High School from 2008 to 2012. When he wasn’t driving around in his Mustang that won him the 2012 Senior Superlative for best car, he was actively participating in an array of extracurriculars. This included sports such as cross country, golf, wrestling, volleyball, baseball, and lacrosse. He was also the women’s volleyball manager for a period of time and engaged in student council, Periscope, and YoungLife. 

“It seemed like I was always doing something [while at CHS],” Towery said.

WINNING WHEELS: Towery poses with his car for the 2012 CHS Oracle Yearbook. When he was in high school, he was awarded the superlative for Best Car. (2012 CHS Oracle yearbook)

Towery was also a part of HerdTV all four years of high school. 

During this time, “[he] came up with the idea of showcasing food reviews on HerdTV.” 

These food reviews showcased broadcast members’ true opinions of some of Carlisle’s favorite local restaurants. Some restaurants featured were the North Hanover Grille, The Pizza Grille, and the now-closed Green Room Bistro & Juice Bar.

“[HerdTV members] would go during school. It was the coolest thing I ever did,” Towery said, “We would go get to eat for free, make a video, and then play it on HerdTV.”

Many of these extracurriculars helped shape him into the person he is today. 

“This year there was a movement to make wrestling a sanctioned high school sport [in Mississippi]. I had just moved here when all of this was starting to go about and was like ‘Hey I wrestled a little bit when I was in middle school and high school, I would love to help out.’ Now I’m a high school wrestling referee.”

Those HerdTV food reviews paid off as well.

“The two most notable [extracurriculars] are both HerdTV and Periscope because now I am in the Department of Journalism and Media Studies at Jackson State,” Towery said. “My whole academic career has been focused on communications.”

Reflecting on high school, something he said he would change if he could go back is being more involved. While he always felt like he was doing something, a specific extracurricular he wishes he was a part of was Model UN. 

“I had a lot of friends who did Model UN, and it seemed like a really great networking event,” Towery said.

After high school, Towery took a fairly different path than he thought he would. At the time, his whole family was in the military, so his mentality was that he would likely join the armed forces as well.

“I wasn’t really a nerdy guy,” Towery said. “I consider myself a nerd now because I did go on to get a Ph.D. I never in a million years thought. I would become an academic and go back into education.”

CHS alumni Nate Towery is now an Assistant Professor of Integrated Marketing Communications/Sports Media at Jackson State University. (Don Spann – Jackson State University)

Similarly, he didn’t see himself settling down in Mississippi. The decision was largely pushed by there being few openings in the job market after he received his Ph.D. from the University of Alabama in 2021. 

“I would have gone to California, to New York overseas,” Towery said, but the opening at Jackson State just happened to be perfect for the circumstances.

Despite everything that he has accomplished, there are two specific achievements he is most proud of. 

The overall life accomplishment that he receives the most gratification from is “getting engaged… having an opportunity to marry the person that I love,” Towery said 

However, Towery said that “professionally speaking, getting the Ph.D. is a pretty big deal. Doing it during COVID and my father actually passed away during that time too –in three years was pretty impactful.”

He has also had numerous publications, many of which are listed here. If you would like to see more of Towery now, he has recently decided to start streaming video games on Twitch

The advice that he would give a high schooler now is “Appreciate where you are. Looking back, it goes by really quickly. Don’t get caught up in the small things because life goes on, but also try to try everything, because once you get out of high school, there’s not the opportunity for you to do that.”