Belmont University Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) recently self-published a children’s book, Freddie’s Organic Farm, to teach elementary-age students about the sustainable practice of organic farming. The book features real-life organic farmer Freddie Haddox of Williamson County, whose family inherited 112 acres near Columbia Pike during reconstruction in the 1860s. The land was always farmed organically, but Freddie continues that tradition as the first in his family to become certified as an organic farmer.
Freddie’s Organic Farm was written by Jen Hermansen and illustrated by Clare Cannon, both Belmont students. Hermansen and Cannon joined “Farmer Freddie” at Percy Priest Elementary School on Fri., Feb. 27 for the first book reading. Click here to read The Tennessean‘s coverage of this event.
This book is the first in a series, with two more books anticipated on the topics of recycling and conservation. Upcoming editions will be translated into Spanish, and additional readings are planned for other area schools. The book will be presented at the SIFE National Competition in the organization’s environmental sustainability category.
SIFE is an international, non-profit organization active on over 1,000 college and university campuses in more than 40 countries. SIFE students form teams that serve their communities by developing projects that take what they are learning in their classrooms about business and use it to solve real world problems for real people. The SIFE program concentrates on five areas: entrepreneurship, market economics, success skills, financial literacy and business ethics. Each year, the teams present their projects at competition where they are judged on creativity, innovation and effectiveness.
The Belmont SIFE chapter was initiated during the 2005-2006 academic year. The team received “Rookie of the Year” honor on regional and national levels in 2006 and has been champion of its region for three consecutive years, finishing among the top 20 teams in then nation in 2007 and 2008. Belmont’s chapter is led by Dr. John Gonas, who is also Tennessee’s 2008 Professor of the Year.