First official gathering of Don Bosco Past Pupils in Mongolia
By Ms. Madeleine Picozzi
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, 12 May 2018 — Don Bosco ITSC, in Ulaanbaatar, witnessed a historic event on 12th May 2018, as they held the first ever official gathering of Don Bosco Past Pupils. Some 320 former students, staff and teachers, some of whom are also graduates of the school, came together, some for the first time in sixteen years.The Salesians arrived in Mongolia in 2001 and opened the school (DBITSC) in the same year. It teaches six professions: Auto mechanics, Construction, Plumbing, Welding, Sewing & Tailoring and Secretarial Studies. Students are also taught academic subjects, giving them dual qualifications. Graduates now total 784 but, until recently, there have been no formal activities for them. A small group of Past Pupils, some of whom now work in the school, began planning a way forward in March, under the direction of Br. Andrew Phuong, the school principal.
The Past Pupil Association has three main objective:
Firstly, to keep alive the Salesian pedagogy among the graduates and to help them to nurture it among families and in their workplaces.
Secondly, to provide a support network for each other, helping those among them without work to find jobs.
Thirdly, to assist current students in various ways and also promote the school to potential ones.
Current pupils augmented the event with impressive singing and dancing performances and participants enjoyed some food together. They also had the chance to win prizes in a raffle.
The Association is in its fledgling stages just now but, in the future, they will gather together again in groups to plan how to proceed. It could be a great asset to this technical school, which provides many young people with the skills they need to find employment in this industrial city, as well as care, friendship and formation in the values necessary to help them to become good citizens.
The Salesians of Don Bosco have in Mongolia one technical school, two parishes (Darkhan and Shuwo), one caring center (social work), one youth center (daily oratory, printing press (education and catechetics) with ten Salesians from 8 different countries.