GUWAHATI: In a remarkable feat that coincides with the celebration of 200 years of Assam Tea, the Post Graduate Diploma in Tea Plantation Management (PGDTPM) programme welcomed their first international student for the 2023-24 academic session.
A collaboration between the North Eastern Tea Association (NETA) and Golaghat Commerce College, the PGDTPM course entered its eight academic session this year.
Tiza Banda, who enrolled in the course, is a Zambia national and aspires to acquire skills and knowledge that can be applied to the development of the tea industry in her native country in Africa.
“We feel proud that coinciding with the 200th anniversary of Assam Tea, an international student has enrolled in our course, and we expect this trend to increase manifold in the days to come,” expressed Sunil Jallan, Chairman of NETA’s CSR Committee.
He adds that the enrolment of the first foreign students is a testimony to the course’s potential in transforming the tea industry not only in Assam but also in other parts of the world. “It signifies global interest in the course,” he adds.
The PGDTPM programme, initiated in 2016, aims to provide training and education to local youths aspiring to join the tea industry.
Over the years, it has witnessed the successful graduation of seven batches of students, with nearly all of them securing placements within the tea industry.
NETA, which collectively produces over 150 million kg of tea annually, offers students the valuable opportunity to undertake internships within NETA member-owned factories and tea gardens.
To kickstart the new academic year, an orientation class was recently conducted under the guidance of Dr Utpal Sarma, college principal, Jallan, and esteemed former chairmen of NETA, Manoj Jallan and Nepul Saikia.
The programme’s success has been further bolstered by the dedication of Course Coordinator & Associate Professor Rajesh Jaiswal and Programme Coordinator Ranjit Kumar Mazumder.