Port Moresby, PNG, 19 November 2018 -- The Educative Pastoral Community of Don Bosco Technical School, together with the parents, guardians, and friends of the 160 graduating students of the Employment Oriented Skills Development Training (EOSDT), gathered at the Kurongku Hall for the 17th Graduation Day for those who underwent this training.
This Short Term Course, which is primarily for the out-of-school persons, is conducted for 16 weeks (July to November). Students are offered a choice of the following trades: House Wiring and Installation (HWI), Metal Fabrication and Welding (MFW), Motor Vehicle Technology (MVT), and Basic Computing.
Mr. Peter Ririma, Christian Living and Personal Development teacher and Mrs. Wendy Vagi, IT teacher were the emcees. The ceremony began with the traditional processional march of the staff and graduating students. Jordan Iyapeng, the Prefect for Religious Activities led the invocation while the School Captain, Jeffrey Wangumeri led the singing of the National Anthem and the recitation of the National Pledge.
The school Rector, Fr. Angel Sanchez SDB delivered his Message and Welcome Remarks and explained how this batch was different and somehow ‘special’ from the others. First, this batch were the biggest in number. They were 180 when they began and along the way about 20 withdrew. Second, ‘in the group, there are students from all walks of life,’ the Rector noted. He also pointed out that among the students there are two religious: Br. Bernard Wear of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart who took up House Wiring and Installation, and the Salesian practical trainee, Br. Jeevan Lewis who took up Motor Vehicle Technology. There was also a Persian refugee, Sajad Ajari, who took up House Wiring and Installation. Unfortunately, he could not be present as he was forcibly returned to Manus Island just before the end of the Course. It was also observed that some of the students are already parents themselves. And Fr. Angel gave them as examples to the rest in their “willingness and determination to learn and go back to the rudiments of schooling.”
Mr. George Isoaimo, the Deputy for Student Affairs and Discipline called to the stage the recipients of Special Awards: Excellence in Deportment, Perfect Attendance and Service Award. Mr. Kenneth Gonzales, the Deputy for Technical presented the awardees in the different technical fields. Since last year, female students were admitted to take all the technical trades which used to be offered only to males. This year, it is wonderful to see that the recipient of the Technical Excellence Award in Motor Vehicle Technology was a female student, Christel Ravusiro.
On behalf of the graduates, Sebastian Timbun, the Class Captain of HWI-B delivered the Vote of Thanks. He was the recipient of several awards: Best in Trade Practice, Best in Trade Drawing, Best in Trade Maths, Service Award, Perfect Attendance Award, and Excellence in Deportment. In his message, he spoke about believing in oneself and not letting obstacles hinder one’s path to success. He thanked the DBTS Community and the Salesian educators, and reminded his fellow graduates and fellow Bosconians of what they have been always told: and formed to become: ‘Bosconians are Servant Leaders’. ‘Bosconians are ‘born for greater things.’
To cap off the event, Mr. Martin Dai, the Principal, gave the graduates some important points to remember as they move on in life. Among other things, he challenged the graduates to continue striving to become ‘good Christians and honest citizens.’ He also encouraged them to live life with ‘joy and optimism.’
The ceremony closed with the graduates standing on the bleachers in front of the stage singing with pride the Alma Mater song. The last line of the song is truly a powerful statement: “Loving our land. Helping all people. Youth of today, forward march!”