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Agricultural Education: Supporting Economic Recovery

The Teagasc National Education Conference, which is sponsored by FBD Trust, will take place in Dublin Castle on Thursday 10 February. Agricultural Education: Supporting Economic Recovery is the theme for this one day conference which will address the issues facing the education sector in Ireland in the future. A panel of national and international speakers will outline the current situation and explore the opportunities and challenges facing the providers of agricultural education in Ireland.

The direction of EU agriculture and the implications for agricultural education will be addressed by Mairead McGuiness MEP, while John Fitzgerald from the ESRI will examine the role of education in Irish economic recovery. Speakers from Scotland, Northern Ireland and Denmark will give an insight into the agricultural education systems being adopted in those areas. While the role of discussion groups and benchmarking farms in providing education will be discussed in the afternoon.

At the conference, the Teagasc/FBD student of the year awards, which recognise the achievements of the best students in country, will be presented by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Brendan Smith TD.

Speaking at the announcement of details of the conference, Teagasc Director Professor Gerry Boyle said: "We have seen a resurgence of interest in agricultural education over the last four years. There are now over 3,000 students attending Teagasc run agricultural, horticultural and equine courses in the colleges and education centres around the country. These young people are the lifeblood of the industry for its future development."

Speaking on behalf of FBD, Adrian Taheny said: "FBD Trust is delighted to support this education conference, which builds on our ongoing commitment to the “Student of the Year” awards. FBD Trust recognises the importance of education in developing the agriculture sector in Ireland."

Pictured discussing the details for the upcoming Teagasc Agricultural Education Conference sponsored by FBD Trust and taking place in Dublin Castle on 10 February are (L to R): (front) Teagasc Director, Prof. Gerry Boyle; Minister for Agriculture Fisheries and Food, Brendan Smith TD; (back) Paddy Browne, Head of Education, Teagasc; Adrian Taheny, FBD Trust.