Solon wants to establish an Agri-Kabataan scholarship program

Solon wants to establish an Agri-Kabataan scholarship program

A lawmaker is pushing for the establishment of a scholarship program for poor but deserving students who would pursue college education in agriculture, agri-business, and entrepreneurship.

Rep. Angelo Palmones (AGHAM Party-list) said the target beneficiaries of House Bill 3702 are high school graduates from agricultural and vocational high schools with an average high school grade of at least

80%.

“The bill’s objective is to develop competency skills and knowledge of students in agricultural technologies and agribusiness, provide opportunities to poor but deserving students to realize their

potentials in agribusiness and entrepreneurship, increase food production by utilizing idle lands of State Universities and Colleges,” Palmones, the bill’s author, said.

Palmones said the trend in human involvement in the agriculture sector is decreasing.  He cited statistics from the Commission in Higher Education (CHED), which showed that enrollees in agriculture, fisheries and forestry for the last 10 years have decreased by 32%.

From 87,482 enrollees in 2000, the number has been reduced to 59,692 students in 2010, Palmones said.

Palmones said more professionals are needed in the agricultural sector because 70% of the country’s rural population depends on agriculture.

The bill to be known as “An Act Establishing the Agri-Kabataan Scholarship for Food Production Program in the Agriculture Curricula of State Universities and Colleges,” seeks to establish the Agri-Kabataan Scholarship Program in state universities and colleges in Agri-Business Management and Entrepreneurship.

Under the bill, the entrepreneurship component should be 25% of the entire curriculum in the form of on-the-job training or related learning experiences.

The bill also proposes to have 3 to 12 months gestation on the agri-business venture laboratory and based on science and technology and existing within the State Universities and Colleges (SUC).

Palmones said the bill will complement the priority of the government on food sufficiency by developing knowledge and skills competency in agricultural technologies and agri-business of agri-kabataan scholars

and increase food production by utilizing idle lands.

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