Genius Par Excellence! A Grand Formal Felicitation for 73 St Aloysius College Rank Holders of 2019-20

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Genius Par Excellence! A Grand Formal Felicitation for 73 St Aloysius College Rank Holders of 2019-20

Mangaluru : A Grand formal felicitation programme for Rank Holders who graduated in the year 2019 -20 was held at St Aloysius College (Autonomous), on Monday 21 December, 2020 at 10.00 am in L F Rasquinha Hall, LCRI Block of the college. 73 students of UG and PG programmes who secured ranks were felicitated by the Chief Guest Dr Rio D’Souza, Principal, St Joseph’s Engineering College, Vamanjoor, Mangaluru. Fr Melwin Joseph Pinto Sj, Rector of St Aloysius Institutions presided over the function. Principal of St Aloysius College Dr Praveen Martis SJ, Dr Alwyn D’Sa, Registrar-in Charge, Finance officer Fr Vincent Pinto SJ and the members of the Governing Body were present on the dais. Members of the Academic Council, Staff of the College and parents of the rank holders also witnessed the event. Rank holders with the inconvenience to join the function physically were accommodated through Zoom Online portal. Event was also Telecast live on YouTube for the public.

A nation witnesses’ plethora of events of significance. One such occasion was the beginning of a legacy, of an institution, now with a glowing history of a century and four decades. In the coastal region of South Kanara stands tall with pride, St Aloysius College (Autonomous), Mangaluru with a vision of creating men and women for humankind by inculcating the values necessary for self-growth and also for the welfare of the most vulnerable sections of our society. In doing so there are obstacles seen, challenges faced and results designed. There are students who excel in academics and there are also the brilliant minds who make a mark in the real world by their mere existence itself.

Today, St Aloysius institution celebrates the moment of joy to commemorate the achievements of the young rank holders. Their persevering efforts have not only fetched them personal distinction but also accolades to their own institution. Only a very few have the privilege of studying in a college and these students have distinguished themselves in the elite group and carved a niche for themselves as rank holders. Team Mangalorean extends heartfelt congratulations to each one of them

This day of felicitation is not an ordinary day but a moment of happiness, pride and satisfaction to the rank holders. Pride of being a winner, happiness of fulfilling a goal and satisfaction of being ready to embrace a world of bigger challenges and ample opportunities. To do so, along with the academic inputs one also needs the blessings of the Lord Almighty who is the most powerful and gracious- the programme began with a melodious hymn to worship and thank God for his guidance and support. Following the prayer, Dr Norbert Lobo, Director of Admin Block, welcomed the gathering.

This institution of 140 years of existence is a combination of varied dynamics. To manage college and its everyday affairs, it needs a leader, who thinks beyond imaginations yet with humanity and compassion- it was time for college principal, Dr Praveen Martis SJ to give his introductory remarks elucidated “Students are the ambassadors of the College and you – the rank holders are the masterpieces”. He motivated the graduates to achieve their goals by choosing the less chosen paths in their future life.He further said,”This felicitation programme should have been held in July,but due to pandemic it got delayed. I feel proud of all these students who have excelled in their academics with high merit. They all went through hurdles,hard work, and finally they all achieved their goal. We have seen them, teachers have seen them-your troubles, hardships and today you are the masterpieces”.

“You have set an example for your juniors. Now try to dream big and make your dreams come true, and also become man and women for others. Also think of others in need,like the patron of our institution St Aloysius Gonzaga. Try to be researchers-take a path which no one has taken, make a change and a difference in society. We need researchers, innovators, scientists, and other professionals- and you are the ones to fill these posts. Wish you all the best and success in your endeavours” added Fr Praveen Martis Sj

After hearing Fr Praveen’s choicest words which were an inspiration to all gathered, it was time to felicitate the rank holders. Honouring the achievers has been the tradition at St Aloysius Institution since ages and today to felicitate the rank holders for their phenomenal achievement were the reputed dignitaries on the dais, including the Chief Guest, Dr Rio Dsouza, the Rector Fr Melwin Joseph Pinto SJ and Principal Rev Fr Praveen Martis SJ, among others. Dr Alwyn DSa, Registrar In charge read out the list of rank holders to be felicitated. Due to the pandemic situation few students were unable to attend the programme. In their absence, the compere Dr Vidya Vinutha D’souza, from the department of MSW acknowledged their hard work and wished them all the best in their future endeavours. No doubt that this felicitation programme will remain as one of the most special moments in the life of these young achievers.

The glory of St Aloysius College was, is and will forever be up soars and Aloysians will always keep their spirits high with the treasure of love and faith. To introduce the Chief Guest of the programme was Assistant Convenor of the Felicitation Programme, Sonal Lobo, following which the soft spoken, dedicated gentleman, Dr Rio Dsouza, Principal, St Joseph’s Engineering College, Vamanjoor, the chief guest of the occasion addressed the gathering. (THE ENTIRE SPEECH OF THE CHIEF GUEST IS POSTED AT THE END OF THE REPORT).

St Aloysius Institution has always been very lucky to have the best of leaders to guide, inspire and support the institution- and one such leader, the Rector of St Aloysius institution Fr Melwin Joseph Pinto SJ presiding over the programme gave his presidential remarks. in his presidential remarks HE stated that “The education received from this institution has given a pathway to your lives but the real education is gained when you face the challenges in life. What one has received from here in the form of knowledge and skills must be applied in your lives. There is no alternative to hard work. The more you keep doing what you are supposed to do, the happiness and success will follow. One must do something for society by embracing the whole of humanity by feeling for one another. One must consider the whole of the planet for contributing something, only then fulfillment is found”.

As always Aloysians will abide by the ethos of this prestigious institution and uphold its dignity wherever they go. To commend the rank holders, a solemn occasion requires tremendous planning. And Upon successful execution there is a feeling of satisfaction, and to propose Vote of thanks was the convenor of the programme Ms Premalatha Shetty, a faculty at the college. The programme was meticulously and professionally compered by Dr Vidya Vinutha D’souza.

FOLLOWING IS THE SPEECH BY DR RIO D’SOUZA- THE CHIEF GUEST OF THE OCCASION :

At the very outset let me congratulate the young men and women stepping out of this institution into the brave new world with a degree in hand, a hope and skip in the step, so to say, which is more like a wing and a prayer, given today’s world. But still, we need to celebrate this transition, which signifies an accomplishment of a certain degree of training of the mind. And so, I congratulate all of you fresh graduates, and especially the Rank Holders who are present here. Congratulations and my felicitations!I also understand that many students and their parents are witnessing this event online. My felicitations go out to all of them.
Today, you young graduates are stepping out into a world that is developing at a rapid pace. Before you blink the eye, many new technologies will have seen the light of the day, and many will become obsolete. Many of these technologies will no doubt bring in more luxury and wealth into the system, raising the living standard of thousands across the world. But the world is in turmoil today. There are vested interests and political forces which have their own agenda, large corporations and conglomerates with commercial and economic strategies that defy human logic. In the background of this you find large scale degradation of the environment and nature happening all around. Thousands of species are vanishing from the face of the Earth, each year, and we are slowly poisoning our own air, water, as well as every other natural system on the planet.

But I am no prophet of doom! The reason I mention these negative trends is that I want to speak about hope and the rays of light that sometimes inspire us to do the right thing. Many movements are coming up where young women and men like you have sought to come together to create a better way of doing things, a better life for all species, a better world to live in. One needs to be a part of such positive ventures, but it is important to pause and look at the issues carefully, before jumping into the bandwagon.

Let me give you an example: Hydro phonics is a method of growing plants, usually crops, without soil, by using mineral nutrient solutions in an aqueous solvent. When speaking about this, proponents of this method speak of how this technology will avoid waste of nutrients, which is happening is a big way in conventional agriculture, where tons of chemical nutrients run-off the fields into water systems, ultimately reaching the ocean, upsetting the coastal sea-life and environment. Developments are rapidly allowing farmers to grow tons of vegetables and other crops this way, since there are added benefits that a controlled environment brings, for example, due to lack of pests, there is no use of pesticides and hence the produce is organic by default.

So far so good. But if one were to look at the massive way in which this technology is re-shaping agriculture, then we need to ask the question, as to whether we are just reversing the effects of wrong methods in agriculture of the past few decades with methods which will bring in other problems. For thousands of years, eco-systems would have evolved to optimally utilize the nominal run-off which happened due to sustained agriculture. A sudden move in the opposite direction will have its own repercussions. This is just an example wherein I wanted to illustrate that humans sometimes lack vision when working with nature.

There is a school of thought which puts all the efforts by humans into the realm of the artificial and hence, unnatural. And so, you get to hear about artificial intelligence, artificial rubber, artificial meat, etc. I do not subscribe to this idea. My take is that, since the humans are an outcome of nature, so also should all their developments too be classified as natural. But one would point out one difference that stands out, that is the application of human logic, the human power of reasoning, which is not so well developed in other species. It is this power which sets us apart and could be the only gift of God which is a true call to humankind to rise above humanity and live in harmony with nature.

That is where the hope lies. Our power of reasoning is the one which allows us to see good and evil in natural things, natural events and nature itself. But it is a double-edged sword which has to be used carefully, it can create as well as destroy. A college like this, has taught you to use this power with discretion, it has given you the tools to analyze a situation, before taking a decision. Remember that your decisions will lead to action, actions will lead to habits, habits will lead to character and character will ultimately lead to your destiny. This bit of reasoning, the link between thoughts, decisions, to destiny, is attributed to several philosophers. It does not matter who said it the first time, but there is a lot of truth in it. Many of us who have lived a life of several decades now can surely vouch for that.

And so it is that I recommend to you a life of enlightened living. Do not get too attached to material things. Have friends, but keep reading from various sources to broaden your horizons. Such learning can be a friend more valuable than all other friends put together. Be gentle in your ways and understand that all development comes at the cost of something, and nature is an easy causality of development. The cost of luxury is much more than the cost of simple development and this is something which we need to understand very well.

Look for a balanced life, with good companions along the way. Use your intellect and communication skills to setup networks which will have sustainable development as the objective. The United Nations has come up with the 17 sustainable development goals which are a collection of interlinked goals designed to be a “blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all”. The SDGs were set in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly and are intended to be achieved by the year 2030. If you look into these, you will understand how life on this planet is not just for humans, but for all of life.

If we use the special God-given gift of reasoning to develop our humanity truly in tune with nature, then we will truly be worthy of the gift that we have received. Humans today are searching for life on other planets, there is SETI and one might have heard that a promising signal was recently discovered from a star-system some 51 light years away. Scientists and space buffs are highly excited. I am one of them, but it took me some time to realize that, before we go hunting for life across the universe, we need to first understand what life means for all of us here on this fragile planet.

Before we go searching for love all over the world, let us learn to love our neighbour, before we go searching for happiness everywhere, let us look within and find the ocean of happiness which resides within the human soul, that which can be experienced only in harmony with everyone around and never in isolation. I said, with a wing and a prayer… a small aircraft, on a stormy night, with howling winds, having lost one of its wings in battle, has just one wing and it needs a fervent prayer to safely land. My prayer is that, while you have your intellect as one wing, the training you received here, becomes the prayer of your life, and one day, it will see you safely home.

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