eFARM Academy

CHED, Central Luzon State U launch eFARM Academy

Manila Bulletin        February 16, 2022

To help education stakeholders, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and the Central Luzon State University (CLSU) in Nueva Ecija launched the eFARM (Engaging Food and Agriculture Resources Management) Academy Program.

Funded by the CHED, the P15.4-million project aims to bring technologies and innovations to local and foreign students, life-long learners, farmers, local government units, and Philippine and foreign higher education institutions (HEIs).

CHED Chairman Popoy de Vera emphasized that the eFarm Academy is part of the Education Tourism (EduTourism) initiative of CHED that brings together HEIs, local government units (LGUs), and local communities to develop knowledge products, technologies, and activities to make local areas tourist destinations.

Meanwhile, CLSU President Edgar Orden explained that the eFARM Academy is grounded with the clear intention of not only putting food on the table. “It gives emphasis on the immediate need of educating the world on matters that concern food security,” he said.

The project was led by Dr. Gella Patria L. Abella of the CLSU Institute for Climate Change and Environmental Management (ICCEM).

Three exhibits were put up to highlight the major components of the project namely: eFARM GROW, eFARM KITCHEN, and eFARM ACADEMY.

The eFARM GROW (generate, reap, opportunity, and wealth) intends to showcase the existing agricultural technologies developed and generated by CLSU.

The eFARM KITCHEN, on the other hand, aims to translate the research outputs of CLSU into a variety of food processing technologies and culinary applications and package these into videos that will be uploaded via YouTube and Facebook.

The eFARM ACADEMY is the core component of the project which provides online courses and other learning materials that supports the promotion of agripreneurship through its Learning Management System wherein local and international students can enroll for free during the first year of its implementation.

As part of the launching of the eFARM Academy Program, an event dubbed as “Kapihan sa Bukid” was also conducted at the Cabisuculan Mushroom Center in the Science City of Muñoz (SCM), Nueva Ecija to intensify the partnership between CLSU, SCM LGU, and the Cabisuculan Mushroom Growers Association as one of the beneficiaries of the eFARM GROW.

De Vera also stressed that universities should prioritize doing extension and not just research because “after all, universities were established to help the nearby communities grow.”

Aside from De Vera, Dr. Jerry A. Rigos, City Agriculturist and representative of SCM Mayor Nestor L. Alvarez, also reinforced their support to any project of CLSU that will strengthen and empower the farmers in their area.