/ 18 October 2022

AGRI Party-list Rep. Wilbert Lee filed a measure that will establish a scholarship program to encourage more students to take agriculture, forestry and fisheries courses.

Under House Bill 2419 or the Agripreneurs Scholarship Program Act, an integrated scholarship program will be established in State Universities and Colleges and in partner private higher education institutions.

The Commission on Higher Education may designate more than one partner higher education institutions per region, as deemed necessary, upon consultation with the Department of Agriculture.

Lee proposed P1 billion support annually to qualified scholars and other educational resource support mechanisms for the pursuit of studies in the field of agriculture.

Thereafter, the fund for the program shall be included in the General Appropriations Act.

Scholars will be required to serve in public agricultural institutions or agricultural institutions or companies accredited by the DA within one year after graduation or after passing the licensure examination.

The student financial assistance under the IASP shall cover tuition and other school fees; allowance for prescribed books, supplies and equipment; clothing or uniform allowance; allowance for dormitory or boarding house accommodation, or transportation allowance, whichever is more applicable; internship fees, including financial assistance during the required internship period; licensure exam fees, if applicable, of the scholar concerned taken within one year after graduation, and subsistence or living allowance.

The DA, in coordination with relevant government agencies and financial institutions, shall prepare and consolidate cash grant programs that can be availed of by agripreneur scholars who wish to venture and establish their agribusinesses.