CHARACTER EDUCATION ACROSS THE CURRICULUM
AMERICAN FREEDOMS COMPACT PROGRAM
Student's Name________________________________ School________________________ Grade Third
CHARACTER ATTRIBUTE: WORK
Democratic Principle No. 12: Each individual has the right to work, to pursue an occupation and to gain satisfaction from personal efforts.
Students' Concept of the Principle: We believe we should study and explore some careers, carry out some work tasks in terms of our age and ability to acquire responsibility, experiences and satisfaction from work well done.
MY FREEDOMS COMPACT GOALS:
1. Take an active part in all my classes and work hard to earn at
least a B average.
MY FREEDOMS COMPACT ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
1. So far my average grade is above B. On my last report card I had
three A's and two B's.
FRED SOMERS LEARNED TO WORK
This is a story of Fred Somers who as a young boy learned how to work and to know for sure that work is the real stuff that life is made of. Thousands of similar stories could be told of how valuable work is when it comes to getting ahead in life.
Fred Somers as a boy was born and reared on a very small 10-acre farm in Northern Utah. He was the oldest of five children. The family was very poor and his father went to Wyoming to work one summer. While there he was stricken with appendicitis and died. This left Fred at age 14 as the main help in providing for the family of five children. This was in the late 1920's. A few acres of grain, a few chickens and a cow were the main resources on the farm.
Fred registered as a Future Farmer in high school with a chicken project. The study outline in the project book contained 12 pages. Some boys studied and wrote up all twelve. Many boys did less. Too much work some of them said. but not Fred. In his senior year, he researched all the information in the department library on chickens and wrote 72 pages. He was secretary of the Future Farmers Chapter and compiled the chapter report in 1931 which was entered in the national Chapter contest and won second in the United States. Fred too was valedictorian of his class upon high school graduation.
He decided to enter the Utah State University in the fall and major in botany. He had earned and saved $58 in this year of depression. This plus a $100 railroad scholarship was all he had to go on. But Fred Somers had confidence in himself and the know how to work. Very shortly he was employed as a laboratory assistant at the school and after this he completely earned his way through college. He was valedictorian of his graduating class and in 1935 was awarded the Rhodes scholarship to Oxford University in England. Thirty-two such scholars were chosen in the United States each year. Fred did well at Oxford and won the coveted Half Moon recognition.
Coming back after completing the Oxford scholarship, Fred entered Cornell University where he received a doctors degree in bio-chemistry. He co-authored two college texts in bio-chemistry. He refused an offer for twice the salary he was getting in research at Cornell by a tobacco company in the southern states. "I could not accept it," he said, "because this proposed request was based on a false remise and I can't be associated with work that I know to be false."
Fred Somers later became director of an Experiment Station in Delaware where he has made great contributions in science. He attributes much of his success to his school days when he really learned to work.
Dr. Somers is now traveling in many countries or the world devoting his time and talents to develop plants that grow in alkaline soils like many such soils in Utah. From these plants, through scientific plant breeding operations he is finding some whose seeds are desirable for human food. Many countries of the world have much alkaline land and the production of these plants should help feed many starving people living in countries less fortunate than those of us in America.