CAFS Internship Conference promotes academe-industry agri partnership

Various best practices on internship programs were presented during the iCAFS: The P4Agriculture Internship Conference on Agriculture and Food Science on Dec. 4.

The event was organized by the project ‘Strengthening Private-Public Partnership through Industry Practice in Agriculture or P4Agriculture’ under the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), which aims to develop and strengthen the skills of students and promote partnership with the industries to ultimately prepare students for the actual work environment.

The conference was one of the strategies to gather feedback from stakeholders and learn from the best internship practices of the SUCs and international university partners. 

In his welcome message, Chancellor Jose V. Camacho, Jr. emphasized the importance of internship programs in agriculture and food sciences.

“Internship allows the integration of academic knowledge with practical application and skills fostered in a professional environment. We can further strengthen industry and public partnerships by producing university graduates that are not only academically excellent but also capable and ready for the challenges and demand of work in the agriculture and food science industry,” says Chancellor Camacho.

In the keynote address, Dr. Glenn B. Gregorio, director of the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA), who also serves as the chairperson of the technical panel for agriculture at CHED, highlighted the importance of harnessing the academe-government-industry interconnectivity in agriculture.

“Those in academe are the technology generators, the industry are the technology adapters, while the government are the technology users,” he added.

The conference featured local and international speakers from various universities who shared their challenges and best practices in their internship processes.

Some of the innovations discussed were on the provision of program coordinators to establish contacts and networks which enables interns to invite speakers and establish connections for future collaborative research. There was also an emphasis on strong partnership with international universities.  

With the COVID-19 pandemic, some universities were still able to deploy student interns in their respective assigned offices but are on work-from-home arrangements. 

The rest of the internship strategies and innovations may be viewed on the College of Agriculture and Food Science (CAFS) Facebook page: https://bit.ly/2L69KtK

Also present during the virtual conference were Dr. Elpidio M. Agbisit, Jr., dean of CAFS and Dr. Tonette P. Laude, project leader of P4Agriculture. (John Glen S. Sarol)

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