By Gbenga Olarinoye
The United States Agency for International Development, USAID, and Osun State Polytechnic, Iree, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to commence training, teaching and research programmes in the state polytechnic with the establishment of Faculty of Agricultural Science and Engineering in the institution.
According to the Media Relations Officer of the Institution, Mr. Tope Abiola, all machineries have been put in place by the institution to commence full academic programmes in Agricultural Science and Engineering.
He said that USAID and Winrock International have expressed full interest to partner with the institution through its ‘Farmer to Farmer Project’, a global programme of the USAID through which agricultural education is given globally.
To this end, an American Professor of Agriculture, Soil and Botanical Science, Professor William James Zimmerman, was on a visit to the institution to interact with management, the Iree community and Osun State government to ensure success of the programme.
According to Abiola, about 106 acres of land has been acquired by the Polytechnic for the take-off of the programme. Expressing happiness over the partnership, the State Governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, promised to support the project with necessary wherewithal. Aregbesola, who spoke through his Deputy, Mrs. Titi Laoye-Tomori, assured the USAID officials that the state government would support the programme in all ways.
He also charged the management of the institution to provide all the necessary logistics that would facilitate the success of the programme, describing the efforts of the institution to partner with Winrock International and USAID as a sterling opportunity which would boost the credentials of the institution nationally and internationally. The signed MOU would facilitate collaborations between the organisation and the institution with the ultimate goal of achieving the set objective of establishing a world standard Faculty of Agricultural Science and Engineering, which would be a model for training of agricultural science and engineering in the country.