More millennials enroll in agri courses – Tesda

Tesda says more and more millennials are into agriculture giving more priority to the sector
More millennials enroll in agri courses – Tesda
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THE Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda) assured that the central agency will prioritize the abundant agricultural sector in the Davao Region as it has one of the biggest areas of agriculture in the country with a growing number of the agency’s beneficiaries enrolled in their technical vocational agri-related programs.

Enrollees are usually dominated by millennials dubbed “agrillennials”. They are the breed or generations who incorporate technology in agriculture, particularly in farming for higher productivity.

Tesda-Davao Regional Director Ashary A. Banto cited in a media interview that out of the over 300 programs currently offered by the agency, they observed that agriculture gets the highest number of millennial enrollees. And the majority of them are into agri-innovation and entrepreneurship.

This is despite the demands in the digital age which require digital competence as most jobs require some level of digital skill. 

“Naa pud mga bata, (There are young people), the millennials who are into agriculture or ‘agrillennials’. I think it is one of the things that we should be spousing [on]. Kabalo ba mo nga (Did you know) that is a very lucrative [program],” the official said during the “Dialogue with Local Chief Executives and Community Training and Employment Coordinators of Davao Region'' at Dusit Thani in Lanang, Davao City on April 30, 2024. 

Meanwhile, Banto clarified that they have been conducting an intensive selection process on an individual who wishes to enroll in their desired courses to avoid “mismatching” which has been an issue ever since.

This is also one way to fully maximize their skills after the training.

“Before mag-start ang training, naa tay ginatawag nga “profiling”. Naa tay enrollment process. We will take note of that. We will ask prospective trainees unsa diay ang background [nila] karon kay basig diay dili angkop ba. Pero, of course, kung unsa jud ang gusto nila, we will allow them,” he said.

(Before the training starts, we have this called “profiling”. We have an enrollment process. We will take note of that. We will ask prospective trainees about their background because the courses might not suit them. But of course, we will allow them to enroll whatever they want).

Currently, the agriculture sector is one of the priority sectors of Tesda as identified in the National Technical Education and Skills Development Plan (NTESDP) 2018-2022.

The agency has been providing scholarship programs on rice farming under the Program on Accelerating Farm School Establishment (PAFSE) and Rice Extension Services Program (RESP).

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Common courses are Farm Field School on Production of High-Quality Inbred Rice and Seed Certification and Farm Mechanization, Rice Machinery Operations, Drying and Milling Plant Servicing NC III, Agro-entrepreneurship NC II, Pest and Nutrients Management, and Digital Agriculture Course in the Farm Field School (FFS) nationwide.

For 2024, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) has allocated P17 billion for Tesda projects, particularly the continuation of full institutionalization of the “Tesda sa Barangay”.

The current budget is P2 billion higher than the P15.2 billion during 2023.

Banto said they will also sustain the programs in the region and 14 Tesda administrative training centers scattered in different provinces.

As of present, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority-Davao Region (PSA-Davao) the agriculture, forestry, and fishing (AFF) have one of the lowest economic shares with 14.5 percent to the 2023 economic performance in the region with a slight growth of 0.6 percent or P147.18 billion. DEF

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