C Hukwu Osazuwa Joy and Eniola Hontonyo
Federal University Oye Ekiti, Nigeria
University of Lagos, Nigeria
Posters & Accepted Abstracts: J Aquac Res Development
This study was conducted to assess the status of fisheries and aquaculture as a field of study/ career path among youth in Nigeria. Six states (Borno, Katsina, Niger, Ekiti, Rivers and Enugu) were randomly selected from each of the six geopolitical zones in Nigeria. Two structured questionnaires type A and type B were prepared. 60 type A questionnaires were distributed in each state to youths between the ages of 13 to 19 years who were seeking admission into tertiary institutions to obtain information about their desired field of study and career path. 60 type B questionnaires were also distributed to youth between ages 15 to 21 years who were already in tertiary institutions studying fisheries and aquaculture. Results obtained from type A questionnaires indicated that awareness of fisheries and aquaculture as a field of studies in tertiary institutions ranged from 0 to 22%, and the interest in fisheries and aquaculture as a career path ranged from 0 to 5%. The low awareness and interest rate in fisheries and aquaculture as a career path by these youths were as a result of their mindset, poor orientation and awareness of the potentials involved in the career, government policies and incentives. Results from type B questionnaires showed that the 90% of youths studying fisheries and aquaculture in tertiary institutions were coarse into studying the course due to the challenges they encountered in securing admission to study their desired field of interest. 70% of these youth strongly agreed that their major challenge studying the course and taking it as a career path was low self-esteem developed by them as students of fisheries and aquaculture; this was attributed to the constant intimidation and mockery inflicted on them by youths in other field of studies like medicine, engineering and law. Other factors like government policies, poor funding, low job motivation and unattractive packages available for youths in fisheries and aquaculture were responsible for the low interest rate of youths in taking up fisheries and aquaculture as a career path. Improved awareness, creation of jobs for fisheries and aquaculture graduates/professionals, increased job motivation from government and paying more attention to youths in the field were recommended to tackle the challenges encountered by youths in taking up a career path in fisheries and aquaculture in order to ensure a fish and fish product sustainable nation in the future.