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Indian Ambassador to Germany visits Don Bosco centre for Learning, Kurla

By Fr. Mario Vaz sdb
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Mumbai, Dec. 15. Her Excellency Mrs. Sujatha Singh arrived at Don Bosco Centre for Learning on December 13, and after being traditionally welcomed by the students, Fr. Adolph Furtado the Rector accompanied her to a meeting with the heads of the various educational Institutions on the Campus.
At the meeting Fr. Mario Vaz Executive Director, made a presentation which highlighted the historical growth of the various institutions on the Campus, dwelling on the fact that in keeping with the charism of Don Bosco the focus has been on training ''blue collar'' workers. It is only recently that the Institute has entered into higher education which is also focused on developing industry relevant livelihood skills.

Her Excellency Mrs. Singh showed keen interest in the work done by DB Tech in partnership with the Government of India for imparting professional skills especially to the rural youth. Fr. Adolph explained the highlights of the MORD (Ministry of Rural Development) project where DBTech achieved the skilling of 60,000 youths over a period of two years. The target now is set on skilling two million by 2020, with an average of 2 lacs per annum. The focus is always on the poor and the disadvantaged.

The work of DB Tech especially in Jammu and Kashmir and the North East was highly appreciated by Her Excellency, Mrs. Singh.

It was indicated that even the students doing the Management Degree Course need to spend one day a week with Social businesses so that they are sensitized to the reality of 'Bharat', the poor, developing India. Her Excellency, Mrs. Singh emphatically supported this initiative because she felt, based on her experience that Management students are far removed from the reality of 'Bharat'.

One successful venture at the Don Bosco Centre for learning has been the Grohe-Jal Academy set up in 2009. It has made significant strides to overcome various obstacles to mobilize students to take training in Plumbing. Most of the students are absorbed by Godrej. These students on gaining the certificate experience a substantial increase in the wages they earn.

Since water is a critical problem in India the Grohe collaboration would not only focus on Plumbing but also on various issues like the recycling of water, the harnessing of water power etc.

Besides plumbing, Don Bosco Centre for Learning also has various other skill development opportunities given to the students like Welding where the Institute has achieved significant benchmarks of excellence.

The Hotel Management provides adequate opportunities to Self Help Groups of disadvantaged women to create a business which even banks are willing to finance. These women are also being trained regularly through Entrepreneurship Development programs.

Her Excellency expressed her great satisfaction with the work being done by Don Bosco Centre for Learning and expressed that she would like to take this partnership forward. One of the ways which will be explored is the industry academia engagement as it happens in Germany where Industry is involved in the recruitment and apprenticeship of students.

After a sumptuous Lunch prepared by the staff and students of the Hospitality Department of the Don Bosco College, which was highly appreciated by Her Excellency, goodbyes were exchanged but with a definite expectation voiced by Her Excellency and Don Bosco Centre for Learning that the partnership should grow.  



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