Agricultural extension agents’ education and turnover intentions in public extension services in Ethiopia
Agricultural extension agents provide informal education to equip farmers with new knowledge and skills. They play critical roles for the transfer of agricultural knowledge, technologies, and innovations. However, most of them dissatisfied and intend to find other employment in Ethiopia. Thus, this study was conducted to examine agricultural extension agents’ education, perceptions towards job satisfaction, and turnover intention in public agricultural extension services in Ethiopia. The sample frame was the list of all first, second, and third-year mid-career students joined Haramaya University to upgrade their educational qualification. Total 123 extension agents were involved in the study. Primary data were collected using a structured questionnaire and analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results revealed that about 89.40% of extension agents acquired new knowledge, skills, practices, and attitudinal change during attending their education at Haramaya University. Results also showed that extension agents were dissatisfied with their current job and organization in terms of payment, promotion, benefits, and recognition. Furthermore, survey results indicate that about 68.3% of extension agents intended to leave their current position and extension organization after completing a Bachelor of Science degree. Therefore, government, private sectors and other stakeholders who work in extension organizations should work on the education and training programs, work motivation, and job satisfaction of agricultural extension agents by designing various incentive packages to increase their work motivation and reduce turnover intentions.
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