A four-year degree programme started in 2005 at the Moratuwa University, where he heads the Transport & Logistics Management Department, will produce its first batch of 52 graduates in September of this year.
"A similar number will graduate yearly from now on."
Kumarage said the Moratuwa University honours degree in transport and logistics provides a management base but has technical components in the areas of transport systems, supply chain, and maritime and air transport, in which students can secure a specialization.
The program was initiated at the request of the island's ministry of ports and aviation."This program which is offered through the Faculty of Engineering will produce graduates especially skilled in professional conduct in the transport and logistics sector," Kumarage said.
These include areas such as airlines, airports, aviation, shipping, ports, public transport, transport planning, supply chain management, warehousing and materials management.
"Traditionally managers entering these fields did so after gathering many years of experience in the field or were graduates possessing other disciplines," Kumarage said.
"Graduates in transport and logistics are expected to be a major boon to the transport and logistics sector which requires speedy development in order to compete with other emerging hubs to become the desired hub in south Asia."
Kumarage said many organisations both from the state and private sector were keen to recruit the graduates.
The graduates of the University of Moratuwa will be joined by a batch of 25 graduates studying for a degree in international transport management and logistics from the private CINEC Maritime Campus.
They are to be awarded a degree from Dalian University in China.
Both CINEC and another institute, the Hill Street Academy, conduct professional examination courses for the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, Kumarage also said.
"All will be beginning careers in transport and logistics in the next few years."