Northrise University has formed an Agriculture Committee to prepare the way for opening a School of Agriculture in 2020. The committee partners with an Engineering Committee simultaneously developing a School of Engineering.
During Impact Ndola 2017, some members of the Agriculture Committee (Chairman Alan Smith, Scott Shillings, Doug Schneider, and Lauren Smith) have been participating in Impact ministry projects while furthering research for the development of the School of Agriculture. They have engaged contacts in both Lusaka, the capital of Zambia, and Ndola, where Northrise University is based.
While in Zambia, the team has interviewed leaders from farms, agricultural businesses, universities, and training centers, both successful and unsuccessful. These interviews were done with the objective to gain insight from the various agriculture related institutions regarding the development of courses, faculty, and facilities and eventually shape Northrise University’s future School of Agriculture. This Zambia tour follows many committee meetings and a recent trip to Dordt College, a Northrise partner in Iowa. Agriculture professors from Dordt Drs. Ron Vos and Duane Bajema also serve on the the committee.
Prior to the trip, Lauren developed surveys, which were distributed by Doreen Zimba and several Northrise students to local high schools, agricultural professionals, and farmers. Today over 350 surveys have been returned and analysis is underway. By learning from the Zambian agricultural and education communities directly, this visit and the survey results will help steer the committee in the proper direction for writing the agriculture curriculum.