STUDENTS at the Martin Luther Seminary in Lae were thrilled to harvest the first yields of their rice pilot project on Monday.
The project was initiated by the students in June as part of their basic skills training and to promote self-reliance.
The students harvested two tonnes of rice from two hectares of paddy.
School representative council president Michael Manase said apart from theology courses, they decided to take up a practical project to complement their studies.
He said though the students did not receive any technical advice on rice farming, they went ahead and planted the crop as part of learning.
Seminary principal Rev Giegere Wenge commended the students for their initiative.
He said this was the first time the students had grown rice and believed when the project extended, they would be able to supplement the institution’s food supply.
Subsistence crop adviser from the division of agriculture Ben Muasa assisted the students during the harvest with a manual thrashing machine and a winnower that was provided by the Taiwan Technical Mission (TTM).
Mr Muasa was impressed with the project and encouraged the students to continue.
He said arrangement would be made soon for a technical officer with TTM to conduct a rice farming training for the students.