Each year, the UNU Fisheries Training Programme (UNU-FTP) offers a six-month (September–March) training course. The aim of this course is to enable the attending UNU Fellows to strengthen their professional capacity to actively contribute to the work done in their organizations and to recognize the development potential of fisheries in their home countries.
On 24 March 2014, a ceremony was held for the 22 graduates of the 16th session of the UNU-FTP course in Iceland. The graduating cohort consisted of fellows from 14 countries: Bangladesh, Cameroon, China, Cuba, Gambia, Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, St.Vincent and the Grenadines, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Vietnam.
This year, the Fellows participated in four specialist lines: Sustainable Aquaculture, Fisheries Policy and Planning, Fishing Technology, and Quality Management of Fish Handling and Processing. After six intense months of rigorous, hard work, all the Fellows successfully completed their training and presented their final projects.
The graduation ceremony included addresses by Johann Sigurjonsson, Director of the Marine Research Institute and Chairman of the Board of UNU-FTP, and Einar Gunnarsson, Permanent Secretary of the Icelandic Ministry for Foreign Affairs. Joseph Luomba, a UNU-FTP Fellow from Tanzania, gave a speech on behalf of the graduating Fellows. Many project supervisors, UNU-FTP board members, friends of the programme and former UNU-FTP Fellows living in Iceland were in attendance.
The education and training efforts of UNU-FTP were recently acknowledged by the United Nations General Assembly. In a 9 December 2013 resolution related to sustainable fisheries (A/RES/68/71), the UNGA recognized “the work of the United Nations University Fisheries Training Programme in Iceland, which has contributed for 15 years to capacity-building in this field in developing countries, graduated 280 fellows from 47 countries and, in addition, held 36 short courses in 12 countries” (paragraph 164).
For more, see the UNU-FTP website.