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Choosing a career path in agriculture: A tough calling for youths in Ibadan metropolis, Nigeria



The decline in youth population and the upsurge in ageing farmer population have resulted in low agricultural output and per capital productivity in rural Nigeria, which is a threat to the national food security. High school students’ perception of agriculture and factors influencing their willingness to study agriculture in tertiary institutions were therefore investigated in this study. Information from 285 science students in high schools was analysed using descriptive statistics, Likert scale and logistic regression. Age of the students was 15.30 ± 1.17 years with almost equal distribution of both sexes. About half (50.5 %) of them wanted to study medicine where as only 4.6 % of the respondents were willing to study agriculture in the university. A higher percentage of female students (57.6 %) were willing to study agriculture in tertiary institution than their male counterparts (42.4 %). A higher percentage of students from public schools (51.4 %) were willing to study agriculture whereas 48.6 % of those from private schools were willing to do so. The students were undecided about the contribution of agriculture to national development but strongly disagreed that agriculture gives less income than other professions. Major motivating factors that can stimulate the respondents’ willingness to study agriculture were career awareness program in agriculture, practical knowledge of agriculture and agricultural excursion. The likelihood of a high school student’s willingness to study agriculture increased significantly with having a father who primarily practised agriculture and supports agricultural education, attending a school where crude implements are not used, visit to a mechanized farm and the youth’s willingness to own a farm in the future irrespective of the course of study, while attending a private school will decrease it. In conclusion, high school students had average perception of agriculture and were not willing to study agriculture in tertiary institutions. Suggestions are presented on how to change this negative attitude towards this vital branch of science.

Frequenza di pubblicazione:
Volume Open
Argomenti della rivista:
Life Sciences, Plant Science