Monday, February 28, 2011
Villar Pushes Financial Aid for Agri Students
A bill has been filed aiming to provide scholarships to encourage more students to enroll in agricultural college courses.
Senator Manuel Villar Jr, author of the bill, wants the government to offer scholarships in agribusiness, forestry, fisheries, and veterinary medicine to attract more students to take them up.
The proposed Agri-Kabataan program will also fund graduate studies in environmental and marine sciences, hydrology, renewable energy, and agribusiness management programs.
"Agriculture as a profession has lost its attraction because of more lucrative job offers from other competing professions," Villar said, adding the lack of manpower in these fields has contributed to an underperforming agricultural sector.
The government will need a highly competent workforce to realize its declared commitment to modernize Philippine agriculture, he said.
"Opportunities in agriculture have to be created, developed, and made more lucrative to attract more students to enroll in agriculture courses," he said.
The Agri-Kabataan scholarships are aimed at graduates of agricultural and vocational high schools but will also offer assistance to college students already studying agriculture.
Besides study grants, the bill will include entrepreneurship and on-the-job training components in the curriculum for agriculture students.
Students will be sent to work at agribusiness ventures for 3-12 months at a time under a supervised farming schedule.
Villar's bill also sets aside P50 million as start-up capital for an agribusiness venture laboratory for students who seek to put up their own businesses.
Senator Manuel Villar Jr Helping Philippine Farmers
We congratulate Senator Manuel Villar Jr on his vision and efforts to help support Philippine farmers have a better life through agriculture, and helping all Filipinos have enough food to eat each day. Success follows leadership . . . lead the way to success for the Philippines.
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