What is Agricultural Journalism? What influence does it have on the agriculture industry Trinidad and Tobago and the Caribbean? Who is an Agricultural Journalist? Those are just a few of the questions that came to my mind when I first heard the term Agricultural Journalism.
To discover the answers I sat down and had an enlightening conversation with Keron Bascombe. He is young professional in the agriculture industry, seeking a career in agricultural journalism and communications. Keron is currently pursuing a Masters of Science in Agribusiness and Marketing at the Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension in the University of the West Indies, St Augustine Campus.
He is also the President of the Agribusiness Society of the University of the West Indies and the Country Representative for Young Professionals’ Platform for Agricultural Research for Development (YPARD. As a blogger and freelance writer, he is currently transforming his blog “technology4agri” into a social enterprise featuring journalistic pieces in support of agriculture. The aim of the blog is to assist in the development of youth in agriculture and Agri-preneurs through the provision of an interesting and up to date agri-information service.
Enricka: Keron, what made you decide to become an agricultural journalist?
Keron: I was always good at writing so when the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) started their blog competition I decided to try it. Around the same time, I was really getting involved with social media. I had already submitted for my research proposal in class. As time passed on I realised I enjoyed writing, finding content, and meeting people. When I write a good post, I feel good. Then I entered Wisconsin and learned more about blogging. I had a second blog for a while on my life at Wisconsin. Right after, I won the blog competition and went to South Africa. It was there is a I saw a job in Agri-journalism and Communications, a career. This was cemented with my trip to Uruguay were I was a Social Media Reporter. I am determined, almost obsessed with getting this career. It is the experiences you get that help you to decide your future. I was lucky to find my passion. Looking back, I believe being a journalist was a dream job of mine as a child.
Enricka: That a very intriguing combination of experiences that have shaped your career journey. Do you see a market for this career in Trinidad and Tobago or the Caribbean?
Keron: I do but it is extremely small now. Efforts must be made to increase the importance of agriculture in general. The way to do that is through journalism. The more important it is the more options there will be for agricultural journalist. Even so, the better view would be to say I am a journalist that specializes in agriculture, the environment and other related topics. However, for now there is not much of a difference.
Enricka: What academic programs do tertiary educational institutes in Trinidad and Tobago or by large the Caribbean have established to for someone interested in pursuing this field of study?
Keron: There is none. One would have to do programs in journalism of which there are few.
Enricka: What advice would you offer someone wishing to enter this field?
Keron: To seek as many opportunities in the field and to practice writing, content generation and other journalistic areas as much as you can. Lastly, to stay dedicated, because it takes some time to get where you want to reach.Originally posted on Oilandmusic