Luweero, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Bukalasa Agricultural College has embarked on the implementing a new competence Based Education Training Curricular with the aim of equipping farmers with skills.
As a result, the college has introduced Short term courses targeting Agricultural practitioners and professionals with the initial emphasis on Agro-processing, crop production and livestock business management.
The curriculum was developed by Uganda Skilling Development Program (USDP).
Gelvan Kisolo Lule, the Principal Bukalasa Agricultural College explains that under the new curriculum, learners will have chance to determine their duration on the course by selecting from the available modules based on their needs.
According to Kisolo, after completing the module, students will be free to go and apply the skills they have attained from the training with the aim of solving unemployment.
Kisolo says 60% of the learner’s assessment will be done by the college and 40% by Uganda Business and Technical Education Board (UBTEB).
He notes that those who need to upgrade to diploma level will study for two years and graduate in their relevant fields.
The short courses will take between 6-10 weeks to complete. Applicants with the exception of those who wish to get diplomas and certificate don’t need any prior academic qualifications.
The short courses will be available starting the first semester of 2020, which commences on March 2, 2020. The college is yet to set standard fees for the short courses.
Abbey Ssozi Bakisuula, the Luweero District Production Secretary has welcomed the intervention, saying it will enable farmers attain the skills needed for commercial and modern farming.
Bakisuula also notes that the short courses will help to reduce on the time wasted by students to study many modules yet they only need a few skills for survival.
Christopher Kaye, a farmer in Katikamu sub county has welcomed the introduction of the short courses but asked the College to fix affordable fees to attract as many farmers as possible.
In 2017, the government with support from World Bank upgraded Bukalasa Agriculture College to a Centre of Agriculture Excellence for agriculture training and twinned it with the College of Dalhousie University from Canada for mentorship.
World Bank extended a grant of Shillings 11 billion for expansion and equipping the college.
These include the construction of farm houses, Information Communication Technology and library, renovation of classrooms, lavatories, and equipment, water and electricity systems among others.