The Department of General Agriculture was established in January 2006 and given accreditation to offer courses leading to the award of the Higher National Diploma (HND) in September 2006. The first batch of students, numbering 50, was admitted in October 2006.
The students’ population as at August 2016 was 158. Since 2009 the Department has trained over 560 students who graduated with HND in General Agriculture. A total of 46 different courses are covered in the six semesters of the GAG programme.
The Department has two production sites which are the Duayaw-Nkwanta Farming Village (for arable crop production and goat breeding) and the Demonstration Farm (near the E. K. Agyei Library) where poultry and various vegetables are produced. At the 2015 congregation, the Department produced the overall best student of the graduating year group.
The vision of the Department is to become a centre of excellence for the provision of career-focused and practically oriented training in the field of Agriculture and post-harvest technologies for the socio-economic development of the country.
The mission of the Department is to provide career-focused education and practical training at the tertiary level, and for general agriculture practitioners, producing graduate with hands-on experience and entrepreneurial abilities to fill the middle and higher human resources needs of the country.
Specifically, the programme aims at achieving the following objectives:
To impact current and state of the art knowledge on agriculture to enhance animal and crop production and productivity
- To inculcate into trainees the spirit of entrepreneurship in the field of agriculture
- To help graduates develop practical and innovative skills in post-harvest technologies of agricultural produce
- To provide trainees with innovative and practical skills on the sale and marketing of agricultural produce
- To provide industrial training and acquire hands-on experience through internships and field trips
- To inculcate into trainees the skills of research and information dissemination through seminars, workshops and extension
- To lay strong foundations for the study of agriculture at higher academic levels
- To train students to plan, implement and evaluate agriculture programmes in crop production, agroforestry, horticulture and animal science
These include lectures, laboratory exercises, fieldwork and internships, seminars and industrial attachments.
Job prospects for the graduates are quite high in an economy where majority of the working population is engaged in agriculture or agro-based industries. The diverse nature of the programme equips the students with the requisite training for them to start their own agriculture businesses and fit into many areas of specialization such as Extension Officers and Research Assistants.
The Department has sixteen academic staff, three administrative staff, three production unit staff, five farm labourers and a driver.
On-Going Research & Production Activities
Several on-site trials and research activities (by both staff and students) meant to enhance the practical training of students and extension services to neighbouring communities are run at the Department’s production sites on campus and Duayaw-Nkwanta. These include:
Comparative studies of soil amendments in seedling propagation and also in the production of vegetables and maize
Formulation, supplementation and inclusion of local materials in animal feed
Introduction of sesame in farming systems as a cultural pest control strategy and an alternate food security crop.
The commercial production and showcasing of maize, yam and tree crops as an extension strategy in neighbouring communities
Adopting improved storage structures and on-farm value addition for maize and yam.
Community interactions to identify the roles and incentive demands of inhabitants of the Diabaa forest.
Comparative studies of organic and inorganic fertilizers on the growth and yield performance.
Assessing the effects of difference transplanting ages of pepper seedlings on their growth and yield
Adoption rates of good post –harvest practices by maize and tomato farmers and traders in the Techiman Municipality
Design, construction and testing of domestic solar tent dryers
Survey of pesticide use and application patterns among food crop farmers in the neighbouring communities
Perception of food crop farmers on the retention of trees on their farms in the Savannah Eco zone.
Assessing the yield and growth performance of carrots on three different planting media. Comparative studies on the growth and yield performance of tomato using different organic manure.
Anti-nutritional factors in false yam and their effects on physiology and metabolism on chicken production
Effect of plastic waste ingestion on the health of small and large ruminants
Introduction of sesame in farming systems as a cultural pest control strategy and an alternative food security crop.
Design, construction and performance of solar flat glass plate collectors using various cover materials.
Mounting of Bachelor of Technology (B-Tech) programmes in General Agriculture, Agribusiness and Agricultural Mechanization and Master of Technology (M-Tech) in the aforementioned programmes.
Extension Services to farmers in adopted communities.
Processing of fruits (mango and citrus) and animal products from our farms.