Miss Chikomborero Chiobvu won the AEASA/Prime Africa Award for the best final year student in Agricultural Economics during the 2020 Natural and Agricultural Sciences’ annual exceptional achievers function for top performing students. We have asked her to reflect on her journey as a student at the University of Pretoria.
“I am a true child of Africa, I was raised in Zimbabwe and Mozambique, and this experience gave me a small glimpse as to the potential that stood on this continent. Africa has played a significant role in feeding the world through the exportation of raw materials. I knew there was so much to be done in this industry for the betterment of our continent and the food security of its people.
When the time to choose a path for my future and apply for higher education came, I chose Agricultural Economics as it provided a wide view of the agricultural industry and how it impacted our daily lives.
Throughout my undergraduate studies, I learned more about our capacity as a continent and all the experiences I had in Zimbabwe as the breadbasket and Mozambique as a place of growth and abundance provided by the ocean. My time at the University of Pretoria was not limited to textbooks and daily lectures. We had the privilege of having conversations with industry leaders as well as educational farm visits. These activities broadened my understanding of the theoretical concepts discussed in class. A combination of practical exposure and textbook learning deepened my understanding of where I was headed in my career. I knew I had more to give.
My aspirations for the future include creating long-lasting change in the agricultural industry. I hope to achieve this by assisting in the creation of market opportunities for farmers through research, business development, and financial assistance. For plans to be implemented and changes to be made, there is a need for a foundational understanding of what needs to be done. This is where research comes in. The application of the said research through business development is the second step. I hope to work with agricultural organisations that support the betterment of our farmers and agribusinesses. Collaborating with financial institutions, I hope to assist in giving answers as to what needs to be done to open doors in agriculture for African potential.” ~Chikomborero Chiobvu