A New Career in Seven Minutes
August 6, 2019
Globally, the lack of young people participating in agriculture careers is taking a toll. In addition, African countries have been significantly impacted by the lack of innovation in agriculture and will look to future generations to help bring new food security solutions to the continent.
Team TNT, a group of six plant scientists who noticed this trend, presented their idea for a project to fix it to a panel of judges at the International Congress of Crop Protection (IUPAC) Next Generation Agri-Summit that was held in Ghent, Belgium in May.
The project that secured the TNT team a tie for the win and a grant for 500€ aimed to create and deliver a seven-minute educational video on crop protection careers in agriculture for 14-17-year-old high school students in Uganda by June 30, 2019. This video featured the members of the TNT team, each speaking from a different place around the world, sharing their experiences and encouraging students to consider a career in agriculture or plant science, particularly in crop protection.
The goal of the video was to connect with high school students and share new and exciting career opportunities with them. Team TNT chose to show the video to the young students because they are in the process of considering their career prospects and sharing this information with them could be useful in helping to make clearer decisions.
The video was presented to a total of 705 students. A questionnaire was answered by students both before and after watching the video to gauge the impact it had.
Before watching the video, just over half of the students surveyed said they were interested in a career in agriculture. That rose to 92% after watching the video. The students also identified reasons that may hinder their agricultural career such as lack of support in science courses, lack of continuous career guidance, the expense of agricultural education, and lack of class offerings at local universities.
This goes to show that when presented with the correct information and educated on exciting possibilities, young people can be the harbingers of innovation in the agricultural sector.