CHILE: Students focus on renewable energy with new equipment
Don Bosco Industrial Technical College receives new solar and wind energy equipment
(MissionNewswire) Don Bosco Industrial Technical College, located in Calama, a city in the Atacama Desert and capital of El Loa Province in northern Chile, inaugurated state-of-the-art technical equipment to teach students about renewable energies. The two machines are specifically for solar and wind energy. One of the machines is of German origin and purchased thanks to the financial support of the Arturo Irarrázaval Correa Foundation, and the other machine from Chile was obtained with school funds.
During the inauguration of the technical equipment, a passenger vehicle was also blessed, which will be used for professional needs of the educational center’s student body. The ceremony was attended by students from the electrical and industrial mechanics courses, who will be the direct beneficiaries of the projects.
The school, which graduated its first class in 2021, started with 490 students and offers technical and vocational education for the industrial mining sector — with specific courses in mining, industrial mechanics and industrial electricity. Education is free for its students and classes are offered in both English and Spanish.
“Although the education system in the country is far-reaching, many poor and disadvantaged youth fall through the cracks,” said Father Gus Baek, director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “At Salesian schools they learn the technical skills to find and retain employment.”
Salesian technical schools in Chile cater to students who have dropped out of school and are seeking a second chance. In many programs, students complete their education while engaging in internships with local employers. This increases the students’ hands-on work experience and ability to gain livable wage employment after their studies are completed.
According to the World Bank, Chile has a fairly low poverty rate of less than 10 percent. However, Chile struggles with high rates of income and education inequality. Salesian missionaries working in Chile focus their efforts on providing education and social services to poor and at-risk youth. At Salesian schools, universities and youth centers throughout the country, youth can access an education as well as the skills and resources necessary to break the cycle of poverty.
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Salesian Missions – Chile
World Bank – Chile