Experiential Learning Experience for Undergraduate Students in Livestock and Fisheries Work in India

Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Exhibit Hall AB (Kansas City Convention Center)
S. Robinson , Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL
M. Shelby , Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL
C. Prakash , Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL
Olga Bolden-Tiller , Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL
N. Gurung , Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL
Abstract Text: The Tuskegee University (TU), as a collaborating partner, for the Agricultural Innovation Partnership project funded by USAID in India with Cornell University as the lead institution, was responsible for developing new and enhancing existing animal science courses at select Universities in India for advanced learning to prepare market ready students to improve their employability with market knowledge and market access as well as  to develop curricula to address the needs of small and landless farmers to improve their livelihood. Three faculty members and two undergraduate students from TU travelled to India in December of 2012. The project partners in India were Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel University of Agriculture and Technology (SVPUA&T) in Meerut, India, Banaras Hindus University (BHU), Varanasi, India and Assam Agricultural University in Guwahati, India.  Over the project period, the team assisted with the development of new curriculum and revised the existing curriculum in animal science and veterinary science programs, diplomas, certificate programs and experiential learning programs. Based on our work, the BHU launched a program for Bachelor of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry (B.V.SC. and A.H) effective July 13, 2013. Two other short courses were successfully completed in the hygienic production of milk-based desserts and vegetable processing at BHU. Since 2010, several faculty exchange visits have been made between Tuskegee University and SVPUA & T and BHU. The faculty members from India spent several weeks in the US for developing new curricula and improving the exiting one. In addition to the curricula development for the Indian universities, The TU students visited numerous fish markets, both dry and wet, becoming sensitive to the challenges faced in post-harvest processing, value addition and marketing for such markets in India. Further, TU students observed first-hand various challenges facing animal production systems in rural India.  Students prepared white papers describing their international experiences with comparisons of challenges faced by limited resource producers in rural America (Alabama Black Belt).  Collectively, these experiences provided and continue to provide a platform for enhanced intellectual consideration in their training subsequent to the program.   

Keywords: Experiential learning, undergraduate students, livestock, fisheries