"Don't lose sight of Agriculture" - UG Vice Chancellor
DPI, GUYANA, Tuesday, April 3, 2018
Vice-Chancellor of the University of Guyana (UG), Professor Ivelaw Griffith has urged that Guyanese not lose sight of the important role agriculture continues to play, even as the oil and gas sector comes to the fore.
He made the comment recently while indicating the university’s plan to inaugurate a pilot Institute of Food and Nutrition and Security.
The University of Guyana has organised a feasibility team to seek out the possibility of establishing the institute and has already received a US$50,000 grant from the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) to aid the initiative.
The team includes a Guyanese Chemist and Vincentian Biochemist. According to Professor Griffith, the University is hoping to be able to inaugurate the Institute on World Food day, in October of this year.
The Vice-Chancellor said the University is continuing its investment in the Agriculture sector since it sees it as relevant and will continue to be even after oil is gone. “We have to be true to ourselves and remember that we are at heart an agricultural nation and so we cannot let the excitement about oil deflect us from the attention to Agriculture.”
While the university is also preparing to meet the oil and gas sector, the professor said, it is paying equal attention to agriculture.
“We need to do better at agriculture and forestry and while oil is important, agriculture is just as important. Not just for Guyana, but for the capabilities that we have for the Caribbean and some parts of South America…We are looking to not only lift our boats on oil and gas but on agriculture as well,” the Vice-Chancellor said.
Article adapted from: http://dpi.gov.gy/dont-lose-sight-of-agriculture-ug-vice-chancellor/
Petroleum Dept. & Food Institute for UG
The University of Guyana (UG) is in the process of establishing a Petroleum Department as well as a Food and Nutrition Institute.
Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Ivelaw Griffith said the new facilities are timely since Guyana is becoming an oil producing nation but at the same time, needs to improve its capacity in the traditional economic sector of agriculture.
Professor Griffith announced on the final day of the GIPEX Summit that a study is underway to develop a Department of Petroleum Engineering.
“We have a working group helping to figure out the varying contributing elements to that. What kind of faculty do we need, what will be the curriculum, what are the lab equipment we might need, what are the linkages with industry, who might we have on the advisory board for that department,” he explained.
According to the University’s Vice-Chancellor, as Guyana becomes an oil-producing nation, its students need access to training in all aspects of the industry.
In this regard, Professor Griffith said the University is conducting a gap analysis to determine other areas that need improvement.
“The analysis we’re doing is with a view of the whole university enterprise. What is it we need to do better to prepare in law, what is it needs to be better prepared to do in the social sciences, what is under occupational health, in the medical field, what is it we need to do in nursing. We’re taking a comprehensive approach to the energy venture and adventure,” he stated.
The Vice-Chancellor cautioned that oil and gas should not consume all of the peoples’ energy since Guyana is and will remain an agriculture-based society.
As such, he said efforts are underway to launch a Food and Nutrition Institute on World Food Day on October 16, 2018.
The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) had donated US$30,000 to the University of Guyana to conduct a feasibility study for the establishment of the institute.
Meanwhile, Professor Griffith reiterated that the University of Guyana stands ready to play a leading role in the country’s development.
Article adapted from: https://newsroom.gy/2018/02/09/petroleum-dept-food-institute-for-ug/
FAO to fund UG's establishment of food and nutrition institute; studies on agriculture
The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has announced that it will be supporting the establishment of a Food and Nutrition Institute at the University of Guyana (UG) and help that tertiary institution conduct several studies on climate change related to the agriculture sector.
The announcements were made by the FAO Representative in Guyana, Reuben Robertson at the 10th Turkeyen and Tain Talks, a public forum on various national issues that is organised and held periodically by UG.
He said the US$30,000 institute, which would be established at the Turkeyen Campus, is a tangible contribution to partner with UG in its ongoing leading role in Guyana’s development.
Saying that the focus on food and nutrition security is in line with its global, regional and local commitments, Robertson said FAO and UG would work together towards the establishment of the institute. “Our goal will be to work with the university to strengthen this programme with the expectation that in the final analysis the national capacities will be enhanced and moreover good governance will be established for food and nutrition security throughout Guyana,” he said.
The FAO representative said food and nutrition security is at the helm of FAO’s programme in keeping with its global, Caribbean and local commitments such as the Sustainable Development Goals as set by the United Nations.
He also announced that the FAO would be providing US$100,000 to UG to help that tertiary education institution conduct a number of socioeconomic and environmental studies next year that will feed into the national comprehensive proposal for adaptation to climate change in the agriculture sector.
With the university heightening its public visibility and contribution to discussions on a wide variety of issues of national concern through the now one year old Turkeyen and Tain Talks, Robertson hailed UG’s thrust in forging partnerships.
“The university is on the right path, forging smart partnerships for resource mobilization, enhancing the quality of the programmes it delivers, while at the same time expanding into new frontiers including research and the provision of high quality technical services,” he said.
The FAO, a specialised technical assistance agency of the United Nations, is leading the charge in environmental and social safeguards and standards, classify risks and build resilience to cope with the impact of climate change.
- The University of Guyana