La Trobe presents at Senate Committee

On May 15th 2012, members of La Trobe's Department of Agricultural Sciences were invited to speak at the Federal Senate Committee discussing higher education and skills training to support future demand in agriculture and agribusiness in Australia.

Terry Spithill, Peter Sale, Caixain Tang, and John Webb delivered their assessment of the current crisis in agricultural education, explaining that in the past decade, the number of university campuses with agricultural courses in Australia has been slashed by half - from 23 to 9.

That means there are now about 300 students doing agricultural degrees while the nation’s annual workforce demand is for more than 4,000 positions.

‘The agricultural sector has failed to promote itself,' says Professor Terry Spithill, Head of Agricultural Sciences. 'It needs to get the message out about the many excellent job opportunities that exist, so that students can make informed career choices.’ 

‘It’s an issue of great importance for all Australians. We need to feed a growing population in Australia and worldwide, and maintain a thriving agricultural export industry to create wealth beyond the mining boom.’