Can you tell us about your current job?
I am a research engineer working with cereals, seed and oil crops at the Norwegian Institute for Bioeconomy (NIBIO). NIBIO is one of the largest research institutes in Norway that contributes to food safety and security, drives sustainable resource management and promotes innovation and value creation through research and knowledge production. My responsibilities within the company include planning, implementation and management of field trials. Moreover, obtaining and analyzing relevant and accurate data by utilizing several technologies are some exciting tasks I undertake. At NIBIO, there are opportunities to propose clever research ideas and be assisted by a slew of researchers to realize one's objectives.
What was the path like from high school to the job you have today?
I attended NMBU with the aim of obtaining advance knowledge within sustainable production systems. That goal was achieved through both theoretical enlightenment in class and several practical projects I was involved in, both in school sections and vacation summer jobs.
What can you say about the student environment at NMBU?
NMBU is clustered with students from multiple backgrounds and cultures both national and international. Most students are interested in the other’s stories. Moreover, a bottle of beer will get you accepted into most social groups and make you lots of friends. However, you just may need to remind a Norwegian who you are the next time you meet.
Do you have any advice to future students?
My advice to incoming students is to have a goal for your studies, work hard but don't stress, make friends and find opportunities before the end of your studies.
How do you/your work/your workplace contribute towards work with the UN’s sustainability goals?
At NIBIO, we undertake several researches geared towards increasing yields of crops, maintaining or improving their nutritional value and reducing factors that cause damage and economic loss for producers. Ecological considerations are attributed to all areas of research including forestry. I believe these factors contribute to food safety, security and a sustainable environment which falls within the United Nation’s sustainable development goal.
From NIBIO, Bless Kufoalor's employer:
In what ways do you think that Bless Kufoalor’s education has been relevant to the job he has today?
NIBIO conducts field-based research in the field of agronomy. Plant Sciences is absolutely central to the work Bless does with us. He is currently a field technician. If the technicians have a background in Plant Sciences in addition to practical experience in field research, they often become the link between the project manager and the practical work in the field. The technicians then become very independent and can contribute to the project work beyond carrying out the practical experiments.
On a general basis – what is the most useful thing for students to take with them from their education into working life?
For NIBIO, it is important that the candidates have a great understanding of both the science and the practical agronomic work. We are an applied research institute and communication with the primary industry is very important.