Castries, Saint Lucia, November 24, 2021:– A fisheries extension officer in the Ministry of Agriculture is the first local winner of an annual scholarship sponsored by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
Mr. Hardin Jn Pierre, a Fisheries Extension Officer with the Department of Fisheries within the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, Food Security and Rural Development, is the first Saint Lucian to be awarded this scholarship.
Mr. Jn Pierre will be pursuing Doctorate Research to investigate the incorporation of artificial feed along with live feed (Artemia) to reduce the cost of feed in the early stages of Macrobrachium rosenbergii post larval shrimp production.
According to a press release from the local JIC A office, “This type of knowledge will help stop delays in production of post larvae, help in reducing the cost of production and ultimately helping in making shrimp farming in Saint Lucia more efficient and sustainable.”
Jn Pierre will be pursuing his research with the Kagoshima University, world-renowned for its programmes and research in aquaculture.
According to the release, “Jn Pierre has always had a love for aquaculture and has previously served as Head of the Unit within the Department of Fisheries.
“He obtained a Masters Degree in Sustainable Aquaculture with the University of St. Andrews in Scotland and has completed many courses in this area to reinforce his knowledge and wide-ranging expertise including Coastal Fishing Technique for Sustainable Resource Use and Tropical Aquaculture.
“Jn Pierre also expressed his elation to have received this opportunity to broaden his horizons.
“His passion for expansion of research in this area of study, especially its applicability to the Saint Lucian context will be at the forefront of his research.”
According to the press release, Jn Pierre encourages other Saint Lucians “to seek these opportunities for growth, not only for their personal development but also as a means of national development.”
Hiroyasu Tonokawa, Chief Representative of JICA’s Saint Lucia Office expressed his confidence in Mr. Jn Pierre as Saint Lucia’s first recipient of this scholarship, “as this opportunity continues to contribute to strong bonds between Saint Lucia and Japan.”
He also encouraged other Saint Lucians to take this opportunity to apply for this scholarship program, as it runs annually.
Applicants are nominated by each country’s government, then approved by JICA, after which screening will be conducted at the proposed universities.
According to JICA, “Applicants must pass University’s regular admission procedures including examinations to enter the program.”
JICA has long provided training programs as a part of technical cooperation in various fields to different countries around the world and its Knowledge Co-Creation Program (KCCP) offers short-term training as part of JICA’s technical cooperation.
Hundreds of participants from around the Eastern Caribbean participate in the KCCP in Japan yearly.
The release says, “The programme includes the knowledge that Japanese society has accumulated, including its background in areas such as organizational know-how and social systems, which can only be understood through first-hand experience.”
It adds, “The programs are an important means of technical cooperation which supports human resource development and resolving issues in developing countries.”
In addition to Saint Lucia, one scholarship is given each year to the other participating countries in this program, including Antigua and Barbuda, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Saint Vincent & Grenadines, Saint Kitts Nevis, Suriname, and Trinidad & Tobago.
JICA’s Saint Lucia Office congratulated Jn Pierre on the award of this scholarship and wished him the best on his “Doctoral journey”.
JICA is the primary governmental agency responsible for Japan’s bilateral Official Development Assistance and is chartered with assisting economic and social growth in developing countries and promotion of international cooperation.
JICA Saint Lucia supplies technical expertise, training courses, (ODA loans), grants aid and a volunteer scheme (JOCV) to the island and the core areas for cooperation are Fisheries, Environment and Disaster Risk Reduction.
The Saint Lucia Office also covers Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Saint Vincent & Grenadines, Saint Kitts-Nevis, Suriname and Trinidad & Tobago.