The study provides a comprehensive picture of the current human resource capabilities of graduates in agriculture, forestry, and natural resources (AFNR) programs of the Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU), Pangasinan State University (PSU), Ilocos Sur Polytechnic State College (ISPSC), and Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University (DMMMSU). Using the descriptive research survey design, data from mailed responses of 597 proportionately-sampled AFNR graduates and those from mailed questionnaires of and interviews with 166 employers of AFNR graduates selected through snowball sampling were gathered and analyzed.
Majority of the AFNR current human resources in Region 1 consisted of females, singles, rural area residents, and public secondary school graduates. They pursued an AFNR course because of the immediate employment prospects, affordability, and job opportunities. The graduate- respondents rated themselves to be good in terms of the specialized knowledge and skills in AFNR. They claimed that their AFNR curriculum was very relevant, from which they gained their competencies. Most AFNR graduates were employed in private local firms/organizations in rural areas as contractual workers.
Moreover, the employers of the AFNR graduates were very satisfied with their employees’ understanding of their major and outside fields of study. They were also very satisfied with the general qualities, general skills, and specialized skills of their workers vis-a-vis their job requirements. On the whole, employers were very satisfied with the overall preparation of their employees. Nevertheless, the employers suggested that speaking and communication skills, using new communication and information technologies, and maximizing teamwork be emphasized in the AFNR curricular offerings. Additionally, they express their intention to hire AFNR graduates from the State Universities and Colleges (SUCs).