About 48,000 applications sold for admission this year
Courses on agriculture have gained importance and have become more sought after this academic year.
Tamil Nadu Agriculture University (TNAU), Coimbatore, which has seven constituent colleges in districts such as Madurai, Theni, Tirunelveli and Tiruchi, has sold around 48,000 applications for admission this year.
Last year, the number of applications sold were less than 23,000, said C. Chinnusamy, dean of Agricultural College and Research Institute (ACRI), Madurai, one of the constituent colleges of TNAU. Saturday was the last date for submission of application forms, which were issued online.
The single window counselling for admission in TNAU and the constituent colleges would witness severe competition since the demand for agriculture courses had picked up, Mr. Chinnusamy added.
“Agriculture courses have assumed importance recently. Not even a single graduate, who has completed these courses, is unemployed. There are numerous openings in agro-based and food processing industries,” he told The Hindu on Saturday.
Besides, a large number of students have turned agricultural entrepreneurs after graduating, he added.
According to faculty members of ACRI, around 40 per cent of students who complete undergraduate programmes in agriculture courses opt for post graduate programmes.
Nearly 60 per cent of post graduate students take up research under the Junior Research Fellowship and Senior Research Fellowship schemes, they said.
S.J. Xavier Vedam, principal of Arul Anandar College in Karumathur, also said there is an increase in demand for admission to agriculture related courses.
The college is one of the few colleges in the State to offer under graduate, post graduate programmes and Ph.D in Rural Development Science (RDS), under which modern and traditional farming techniques are taught to students.
“We received more than 120 applications for B.SC in RDS. Our sanctioned strength is only 60. Agriculture related subjects provide abundant job opportunities and the trend has gained momentum this year,” he said.