Student profile – Jacob Landis ’13

Jacob Landis works in the campus community garden. He brought methods and techniques he learned on the family farm for improved sustainability to campus.

Hometown: Sterling, Ill.
Parents: Keith ’83 and Lois (Kaufman) ’83 Landis
Majors: Agriculture science and Bible

How did you choose Hesston?

Both of my parents came to Hesston, and I was brought up hearing their stories. My parents are always running into Hesston friends, and I knew that by starting here I would make great connections.

What kinds of sustainability efforts did you make before coming to Hesston?

A few years ago my family transitioned our grain and dairy farm from conventional farming practices to organic farming. We noticed the impact fewer chemicals had on what we produced and that our impact as farmers affected the earth.

How have you been involved with sustainability on campus?

I helped plan the community garden event during No Impact Week in September. We prepared the garden for spring planting by creating raised beds, something I learned by helping in the garden at home. This led to my becoming head of the campus gardening club, and I am working with the group on long-term planning so in the future we have something to build off of. I am also a part of the Campus Stewardship Group.*

Why is it important for Hesston to work toward sustainability?

Hesston College has the responsibility of being a role model for those who interact with it. As students come here they can learn from the example the college sets. It can also spill over into the community and benefit more people.

What would you like to see Hesston do to become more “green”?

It’s a big dream, but it would be really cool if the college could be completely self-sufficient – grow and raise our own food and go completely off-grid and generate our own electricity through solar panels.

What are your career goals?

I would like to go back to the family farm and serve there in some way. I would also like to get involved with ministry. I have taken a lot of Bible classes here and could someday see myself serving the church – maybe even combining agriculture and ministry and teaching better agricultural practices overseas.

What are you most looking forward to for your sophomore year?

I am going to be a resident assistant next year, and I am looking forward to “bringing up” next year’s freshmen and helping them experience Hesston College to the fullest.

*The Campus Stewardship Group is a sustainability initiative made up of students, faculty and staff that serves as a way to continue conversations about campus sustainability practices and to explore ways to decrease the college’s carbon footprint.