MWICA Seeks Partners to Improve Agriculture Education
The management of Mwimba College of Agriculture (MWICA) has called on stakeholders in the agriculture sector to partner with the college in improving its infrastructure and teaching capacity.
Executive Director of the Agriculture Research and Extension Trust (Aret) which runs MWICA, Dr Albert Changaya, says in the past year alone the intake for the college has tripled, hence the need for more classrooms and lecturers.
He was speaking in Lilongwe at the weekend when 112 students graduated in the college’s two-and-a-half-year Diploma in Agriculture programme.
“This is a milestone as we are having the 21st graduation since the college was opened. We are proud that we are feeding into the industry workers that are highly qualified and able to handle extension work, and for themselves to be farmers.
“This is year alone, we enrolled 166 students for the October intake, up from last year’s less than 60 during the same time. This means we need more classrooms and more teachers. And we feel that if we can partner with other organisations, we can build such infrastructure and further increase the enrolment,” said Dr. Changaya.
Speaking earlier, principal secretary for irrigation in the ministry of agriculture Engineer Geofrey Mamba said the government, which is a shareholder, is committed to helping the school in its operations having realised the role it plays in promoting modern agriculture.
“We are happy with the way the college is working. It is producing more youthful graduates which is crucial as most of the current staff in the ministry of agriculture is aging. We need such young people because our agriculture needs young people who are well versed with modern technology.
“You talk of the use of tractors, drones… that’s what these young men and women are capable of handling. So, as the ministry of agriculture, we hope by utilizing these graduates the nation can improve its food security status,” he said.
Earlier, it all smiles as, in a single file, the 112 graduands walked into the Sapitwa Hall at Crossroads Hotel in Lilongwe on Saturday to witness and be part of the final leg of their two-and-a-half year training programme at MWICA.
Speaking on behalf of the graduates, Clifford Kaferapanjira, who started with a certificate training at the college, said the education he has obtained has opened many opportunities for him in the field of agriculture, including work at big companies in managerial positions.