This article is sponsored by OCP
The pioneering school, with its innovative teaching approach, will be the first project of its kind on the continent, offering new opportunities to young Ivorians with a passion for AgriTech.
Working closely with the Institut National Polytechnique Félix Houphouët-Boigny (INPHB), the Digital Farming School will be the first branch of the Université Mohammed VI Polytechnique (UM6P) in sub-Saharan Africa, located in the Yamoussoukro Technopole.
The project will come into being in the ‘Year of Youth’, as decreed by His Excellency the President of the Republic, Mr Alassane Dramane Ouattara, demonstrating the Ivorian government’s commitment to supporting educational and technological initiatives for young people. Over the next 10 to 12 months, the first cohort of around one hundred talented young people will join the school, benefiting from excellent training in Agritech and using the experimental farm adjacent to the school as their laboratory. The establishment of this school is part of the partnership between OCP Group and the Government of Côte d’Ivoire signed by the Ministers of Agriculture and Industry, under the leadership of Prime Minister Patrick Achi.
The school’s innovation ecosystem will be strengthened by the participation of around a hundred agritech start-up partners in the Farming Innovation Program, launched by OCP Africa in partnership with AgriEdge and UM6P. These partners will work closely with the school to provide expertise, create mentoring opportunities and encourage the creation of innovative businesses in the agricultural sector.
The Digital Farming School’s vision is to establish an innovative AgriTech training concept, offering young Ivorians a unique opportunity to develop high-value skills in the field of digital agriculture. Based on a practical approach, the school will be backed by a reference digital farm, enabling students to learn by doing (Learning by Farming) and by sharing their knowledge between peers (Peer Learning).
Dr. Mohamed Anouar Jamali, Chief Executive Officer of OCP Africa said: “We are delighted to lay the foundation stone of the Digital Farming School here in Yamoussoukro, which will contribute to to open up new opportunities for young people in Côte d’Ivoire in the field of AgriTech, strengthening innovation, entrepreneurship and the digital transformation of agriculture in Côte d’Ivoire and Africa”.
Hicham El Habti, President of Mohammed VI Polytechnic University, said: “The Digital Farming School in Yamoussoukro illustrates UM6P’s ambitions for Africa, focusing on innovation, entrepreneurship and agriculture. This innovative project, which combines learning with This practical training will enable us to support Côte d’Ivoire’s young people in the development of the continent, particularly in AgriTech. “It’s a real pleasure to give this kick-off, which gives concrete expression to this fruitful Pan-African partnership, putting agriculture at the heart of training.”