BRYAN, Texas — During the COVID-19 pandemic, many people turned to side hustles that have blossomed into full fledged businesses.
In the midst of National Women's Month, one Bryan woman is reflecting on her previous time in a male-dominated industry--specifically trucking--while also looking back on where her time as a trucker brought her to currently: candle making.
Regardless, who doesn't love a good smell in their house?
Felicia McKinney, a Bryan resident, started out in the trucking industry like many others, securing her CDL licenses to enter the world of trucking. She made that her career for many years until a multitude of bumps in the road pushed her to look for another career.
That new career ended up being sparked by her creative spirit, and later became Candle Obsession.
"I did everything I could to make sure I left with my CDLs and that's what I did. And that was 10 years ago," McKinney said. "That's what brought me to College Station. They had sent me here."
She was working as a truck driver for an oil field until an injury forced her to change her career. That combined with the company she worked for failing due to the pandemic forced her to look for a new road to travel.
"It hurt everybody here, like they completely stopped drilling in College Station because of COVID," explained McKinney. "So I took my creativeness as my art and put it into my candle business."
However, unlike other candle makers, she doesn't sell your traditional scents, just like how McKinney herself found herself falling in love with a historically male-dominated field.
"You see a whiskey cannister set or a cupcake and you can light it, that's pretty cool," said McKinney.
It's a flame that keeps her smiling and encouraging women to not shy away from historically male-dominated professions.
"You can do whatever you wanna do, don't ever let no one tell you, you can't. or it's male-dominated field," said McKinney. "Just try."
Furthermore, McKinney dreams of having her own store in Downtown Bryan one day.
"I came out here and started completely over with nothing, so I had something to prove to myself, not the men or anybody else," she said.
If you're interested in seeing what McKinney is offering, click here to check out Candle Obsession on Instagram or click here to visit the brand's website.