27 September 2016 – On 23-24 September 2016, CABI showcased its Masters of Advanced Studies in Integrated Crop Management (MAS ICM) course at the launch of the Strate J higher education campus in Delémont, Switzerland. Strate J is the first campus of its kind in the Canton of Jura, offering courses in health, engineering and teacher training. It was established in collaboration with partners including the University of Applied Science and Arts Western Switzerland (HES-SO), the High School Arc (HE-Arc) and the Higher Teachers Education school of Bern, Jura and Neuchâtel (HEP-BEJUNE).
Head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research and President of the Swiss Confederation, Johann Schneider-Ammann, was present at the official opening event. He commented how only two days ago, at the United Nations, he spoke about the types of activities Strate J is undertaking and the importance of education for the young generation. Madame Luciana Vaccaro (Rector of the Specialized High School of Western Switzerland; Rectrice de la Haute école spécialisée de Suisse occidentale) added, Each Franc invested in education is a Franc invested in the future.
CABI and the University of Neuchâtel launched the MAS ICM in 2015. It was the first post-graduate degree to be offered in the Jura region. The course gives students from all over the world an opportunity to learn about sound crop management principles and explore solutions that can be turned into practice and policy in their home countries. The course is supported by the Canton Jura, Plantwise and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.
At the Strate J, CABI also featured other types of its work in education including graduate student training and student internships. Around 100 PhD, MSc and Diploma students have put their coursework into practice at CABIs centre in Delémont, Switzerland. Around 15 undergraduate and graduate students gain internships at the centre each year, where they work mostly on biological control projects run by CABI in collaboration with national and international partners.
At the launch event, visitors to the CABI stand learned all about the centres extensive work on invasive species. They could also experience a Plantwise plant clinic first-hand and see how smallholder farmers in over 30 countries receive the practical plant health advice they need to save their crops.
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