TN AgrAbility is proud of Tennessee State University for their Tennessee New Farmer Academy, which is listed as a resource on the USDA website for veterans and new farmers. The Tennessee New Farmer Academy graduated the 2nd class of farmers at the end of September. Four of the graduates were farmer veterans. It is a small farm program and a six-month certificate program designed for those with an interest in becoming agricultural entrepreneurs. Ideal candidates for this program include those who are new to agriculture, those who wish to transition into agriculture from another field, such as military service or private sector work, or those who are looking for a post-retirement opportunity. The program focuses on teaching the concepts, providing the information, and facilitating the hands-on experience needed to build solid, viable, and successful agricultural businesses. In addition to classroom instruction, the New Farmer Academy provides hands-on experiential sessions on topics including fruit tree pruning and care, drip irrigation and plasticulture, fencing installation and repair, GPS/GIS mapping, sprayer calibration, and equipment operation/safety.
Submitted by Joetta Turbeville White