The Eastern Caribbean Institute of
Agriculture and Forestry, popularly known by its acronym ECIAF, is synonymous
with Agriculture throughout the islands of the Eastern Caribbean.
The Mission of the Eastern caribbean Institute of
Agriculture and Forestry (ECIAF) is to improve the standard of Living in the
Agricultural Sector in the Eastern Caribbean by providing quality training for
nationals of Trinidad and Tobago and other Eastern Caribbean States at the sub
professional level in the fields of Agriculture, Forestry and Agriculture
The overall objective of the ECIAF is
the offering of the best possible training to its trainees in the fields
mentioned above. ECIAF's objective is achieved through the offering of 3
different programmes which are outlined as follows:
A two year residential course leading to the Diploma in Agriculture
A two year residential course leading to the Diploma in Forestry
A two year non-residential course leading to the Diploma in Agricultural
The programs are conducted at the Institute's campuses.
The practical aspects are emphasized and given equal priority to
the academic aspects. The practical aspects of the agriculture and forestry
programmes are conducted on the Institute's forty hectare farm at Centeno.
Additional practical is conducted at private farms, state farms and the forests
of Trinidad and Tobago. The ATEC practical are carried out at selected secondary
schools in Trinidad and Tobago.
A graduate of the school of Agriculture
can quite easily function productively in a farm environment because of the
practical training offered. The training offered at ECIAF also equip
graduates for self-employment or to fill whatever roles their country
The ECIAF Diploma in Agriculture or Forestry is equivalent to
an Associate Degree offered at North American Community Colleges. ECIAF
graduates pursuing higher education in the United States are exempted from the
freshman and sophomore year of the 4-year bachelor's degree and hence enter into
the Junior Year.
At the University of the West Indies, the ECIAF
Diplomate (Agriculture and Forestry) matriculates into the First year of the
3-year B.Sc Agriculture programme. Additionally, National Scholarships
(Trinidad & Tobago) are offered each year to the top two
agriculture/forestry graduates to read for the B. Sc Agriculture at the
University of the West Indies.
The Eastern Caribbean Institute of
Agriculture and Forestry (ECIAF), was established in 1954 and have since then
trained over 1600 students from the Eastern Caribbean States in Agriculture and
Forestry at the para professional level. Additionally, the Agriculture Teachers
Education Center of ECIAF has trained over xxx Agriculture Teachers from
Secondary Schools in Trinidad and Tobago.
Initially, the Institute was
known as the Eastern Caribbean Farm Institute (ECFI), because when the Institute
was established, its mandate was to provide in service training for Agriculture
Extension Officers at the various Ministries of Agriculture in the Eastern
Caribbean Region. Hence its name reflected its purpose.
was established as a Regional Institution with grants from the Colonial
Development and Welfare Scheme, and the Carnegic Corporation.
first ten years, the Institute was organized and administered as a regional
institution Eastern caribbean) and was supported financially by all
participating Governments- (Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, The Windward Islands
and The Leeward Islands).
From August 1964 to the present, the Institute
has operated as a Trinidad and Tobago Institution. This change however, has
never interfered with its regional character in relation to function and student
In 1969, the scope of the Institute was increased when the
Forestry School was added. Training was expanded from farming to include the
emerging concerns regarding sound forestry management practices in the region.
The addition of the School of Forestry was initiated by a five year project
undertaken in 1968 by the Trinidad and Tobago Government with assistance from
the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Food and Agricultural
Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. The name of the Institute was then
changed from ECFI to ECIAF in order to reflect the fact that the Institute was
now offering Forestry Training.
In 1983, the Agriculture Teacher
Education Center (ATEC) was established. This new offering was a joint project
of the Ministry of Agriculture Land and Marine Resources, the Ministry of
Education and UNESCO. The main aim of ATEC was to improve the pedagogical skills
of Agriculture Science Teachers at Secondary Schools in Trinidad and
ECIAF consists of two campuses. The
main campus houses the schools of Agriculture Forestry and is located
approximately three kilometers East of the Piarco International Airport, along
the Caroni North Bank Road in Centeno.
The Agriculture Teacher Education
Center is situated at the smaller campus which is located approximately six
kilometers East of the Piarco International Airport, along the Mausica Road at
the old Mausica Teacher's Training compound.
boarding accommodation on the ECIAF compound is ninety-seven residential places.
The female dormitory consisting of thirty-seven individual rooms. Seventeen
are located on the first floor and sixteen on the ground floor. Community
bathrooms and common rooms are located on both floors. The female dormitory has
been given the name "Lebanon" by its
The male students reside in three
"Colorado", which consists of sixteen individual rooms, occupying both the
first floor and ground floor. Community bathrooms also exist on both
"Las Vegas", which consists of eight shared dormitories on the first floor
and a community bathroom and a gymnasium on the ground floor
"Siberia", which consists of five shared dormitories, four on the first
floor. The community bathrooms and 1 shared dormitory occupy the ground
THE AGRICULTURAL BLOCK Library This
comprises of two classrooms (first year and second year), with each having a
maximum capacity of sixty students. The Institute's main library and a general
purpose laboratory is also located on this block.
The Dining Hall The dining hall adjoins the
kitchen area and can acommodate approximately 120 students. Three meals are
served daily in the dining room. breakfast is served between, 8-9am, lunch
between 12-1 pm and supper, between 6-7pm. At 4pm, tea is served. Dining
Laundry facilities A laundry room is available for
student use. The laundry contains washing machines, dryer as well as several
Common Room At the common room, students pass the
time either viewing television, playing table tennis, board games or patronizing
the canteen which owned and managed by the students guild.
Forestry students share the same dormitories and other
facilities with the Agriculture students. However, the forestry classrooms and
faculty are housed in a separate building
The Forestry Block comprises
two classrooms, equipment store rooms, office accommodation for forestery
administrative and faculty staff, a climate controlled herbarium, an audio
visual room and a forestry museum.
FARM Garage/workshop/service complex The Institute's farm
machinery, equipment and vehicles are housed in this facility. The garage/
workshop is used by farm personnel to carry out maintainence work on vehicles
and equipment. Practical for the various engineering courses are also conducted
in this complex.
Other Farm Facilities Many other facilities
exist on the Institute's farm. These exist primarily for the conduct of student
practical in agriculture and forestry. The facilities include: