260 Tanzanian students dispatched to Israel for intensive agri-training

A TOTAL of 260 Tanzanian higher education students pursuing agricultural courses on Sunday jetted off to Israel to attend 11-month intensive training.

This is part of the government’s initiative to enhance skills and knowledge, as the country steps up gear to revolutionise agriculture sector.

Speaking during the trainees’ send-off ceremony held at the University of Dar es Salaam’s Nkrumah Hall on Saturday evening, the Permanent Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office Labour, Youth, Employment and Persons with Disabilities Prof Jamal Katundu urged the trainees to take advantage of the opportunity and develop their skills.

“The major objective is for you (beneficiaries) to be self-employed and have easy access to employment in the agriculture sector when you return home,” he said.

He added that “The knowledge you will acquire in Israel is not intended to be confined to you. I hope you will return to Tanzania with enhanced abilities, new viewpoints, and a strong desire to help our country to develop agriculture.”

Speaking about the programme, the University of Dar es Salaam Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor – Research, Prof Nelson Boniface noted that the trainees will be equipped with technical agricultural skills from the Arava International Centre for Agricultural Training (AICAT) located in Arava desert, Southern Israel.

“The goal is to give these young, educated, and skilled individuals a chance to become successful agri-preneurs by providing innovative solutions on food production and food security in Tanzania” he noted

Literally, the programme is sponsored by the Israel government in collaboration with the Tanzanian government and it has involved students from the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM), Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA), Igabiro Training Institute of Agriculture-Muleba (ITIA), and Kilacha Agriculture and Livestock Training Centre, Kilimanjaro.

Others are from the Tanzania Research and Career Development Institute (TRACDI) -Dodoma, the Ministry of Agriculture Training Institute (MATI) -Tanga, and MATI – Mbeya, among others.

One of the beneficiaries, Aborgast Mabeya from TRACDI, commended the government for providing such an opportunity and encouraged other students to take advantage of opportunities when they appear.

“I see this scholarship as an opportunity for us to import knowledge and development ideas from abroad through networking with various experts and technologies. I encourage more prospective students from Tanzania in the coming year to apply,” he said.

He added that as the trainees, they are highly motivated and ready to make the change to bring Tanzania a positive and beneficial impact in the agriculture sector.

Speaking about the program’s expectations, the president of Dar es Salaam University Students’ Organization (DARUSO), Hamis Seif Hamis, pointed out that this program will become an important link for various activities performed by these two countries to develop academic and professional networks.

“This programme is very useful and is of great benefit to the students who got the opportunity because they will be able to learn agricultural studies and practice them in a foreign country that is more advanced in technology. This will help them easily self-employ or be employed in the big agriculture companies back home in Tanzania,” he said.

The beneficiaries will depart in three groups, starting yesterday afternoon, and the last group will depart tomorrow morning at Julius Nyerere International Airport (JNIA) to Ben Gurion Airport, Israel, to commence the training.

The AICAT is a programme focuses on imparting professional, theoretical, and practical know-how and skills in advanced agricultural studies based on “Learning by Doing”.

The programme takes place in the Arava region, in the southern part of Israel, and usually involves graduates and final-year students from the faculties of agriculture from diverse nations.

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