Udupi/Shirva: ’Guruvandana’ -Alumni of St. Mary’s College honour their retired tea


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By Dr. Eugene DSouza, Moodubelle
Bellevision Media Network

Udupi/Shirva, 03 Oct 2015: For the first time in the history of 36 years old St. Mary’s Degree College, the old students honoured the retired teachers in a grand and dignified ‘Guruvandana’ function that was held on Saturday, 3 October 2015 at 10 am in the college auditorium. The function was presided over by the Bishop of Udupi Most Rev. Dr. Gerald Isaac Lobo who was the Assistant Parish Priest of Shirva when St. Mary’s College was started way back in 1980. Dr. H.S. Ballal, Vice Chancellor of Manipal University was the Chief Guest. Other guests of honour included Rev. Dr. Lawrence D’Souza, Secretary of Catholic Education Society, Udupi(CESU), Rev. Fr. Stany Tauro, Parish Priest of Shirva and Correspondent of St. Mary’s Educational Institutions, Rev. Dr. Anil Castelion, Campus Director, Alban Rodrigues-former Principal of St. Mary’s PU College, Prof. Rajan V.N., Principal of St. Mary’s College, Mrs. Irene Mendonca, Convener of the Organizing Committee   and  Devdas  Hebbar, President of Old Students Association. The retired lecturers who were to be honoured were also seated on the dais.

 

The guests and old students cmmenced the ’Guruvandana’ programme by releasing the orange, white and green coloured balloons symbolizing the three colours of Indian national flag. Thereafter, the guests were taken to the college auditorium accompanied by the old students to the sound of ’chende’.

 

Following the prayer song by the college choir and welcome address by Principal Rajan V.N., Sri Vishwanath Kaup in his opening remarks highlighted the reason for organizing the ‘Guruvandana’ and said that the idea of honouring the retired lecturers originated by Sri Santosh Shetty, one of the old students presently a hotelier in the United States. The idea was upheld by other old students and the function was organized with the support of hundreds of past students spread across the world. Correspondent Rev. Fr. Stany Tauro, Principal Rajan V.N. along with Prof. Ronald Moras cooperated in organizing the function.

 

Bishop, Most Rev. Dr. Gerald Isaac Lobo along with other dignitaries on the dais paid homage to Late L. Mendonca, Late Fr. Henry Castelino and those staff members and students who have passed away by lighting the lamp and placing it in front of the portraits of Late L. Mendonca and Late Fr. Henry Castelino.

 

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Speakers, one after the other recalled the circumstances and hardships that the management and teachers had to face in establishing and developing St. Mary’s College. They paid rich tribute to the first Principal of the college, late L. Mendonca and late Rev. Fr. Henry Castelino.

 

The retired principals and lecturers honoured during the ‘Guruvandana’ function were: Rev. Fr. Wilson V. D’Souza, Rev. Fr. John A. Barboza,  Sri Prakash Petankar, Sri Pascal Walter D’Sa, Sri Subramanya B., Sri Bhavanishanker Rao, Sri Ronald J. Moras and Sri Gilbert Fernandes-Office Superintendent. They were honoured with ’Mysore Peta’, shawl, garland, fruits, silver memento and scroll of honour.

 

In his address Rev. Dr. Ani Castelino said that if one wants to have pearls, he should dive deep into the ocean and if he stands on the shore, he will only get sand. Similarly, by the depth of education one can get success. He said that the alumni who had acquired good education in the institution have reached the height of success and they have come back to pay respect to their teachers who had shaped their future.

 

Sri Alban Rodrigues remembered the days when he along with the present Bishop of Udupi, Most Rev. Dr. Gerald Isaac Lobo, who was the Assistant Parish Priest then,  had to wait for long hours in government offices in Bangalore to get permission for the starting of the college. He said that the college has grown ever since and the successive Correspondents, Principals and teachers have rendered selfless service to the institution. He appreciated the gesture of the old students to come together and honour their teachers who have retired. He recalled how Sri Santosh Shetty, originator of the idea of ‘Guruvandana’ and his mother had come to seek admission in the PU College and having got the admission, his mother had thanked Our Lady of Health for the gift of admission and today Santosh is a great businessman in the United States of America. 

 

Rev. Fr. Stany Tauro in his message traced the growth of St. Mary’s Educational Institutions from 1898 following the establishment of the Kannada Medium Primary School till the establishment of St. Mary’s Degree College in 1980 and starting of Post Graduate Courses-M.Com and MSW in 2010. He recalled the difficulties under which the earlier teachers had to live and work. He greatly appreciated the alumni for their love of the institution and their teachers.

 

Rev. Dr. Lawrence D’Souza said that by giving one receives. Those teachers who had served the students selflessly receive the honour that they justly deserve and complimented the old students who came together to honour their teachers, thus providing an example to the new generation of students.

 

Dr. H.S. Ballal in his speech said that an institution is judged by the quality of its faculty, the quality of its students and the quality of its infrastructure. He gave credit to the Christian Missionaries for starting educational institutions especially in rural areas and providing quality education. Dr. Ballal distinguishing between a literate and educated person  and said that institutions should produce educated persons rather than merely literate ones.

 

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On behalf of the retired teachers, Prof. Ronald Moras thanked everyone who was instrumental in his taking up teaching profession and enabled him to grow as a teacher in the college. He saluted the old students for their love and affection manifested through the ‘Guruvandana’ function.

 

Mrs. Shantashree Shetty, mother of Sri Santosh Shetty was honoured by the Bishop of Udupi and other dignitaries on the dais.

 

Bishop Gerald Isaac Lobo in his brief message wished the retired teachers good health and contentment and congratulated the old students for organizing the meaningful function of ‘Guruvandana’.

 

The old students expressed their gratitude to Principal Rajan V.N. by presenting him a memento for all the cooperation that he and his entire staff had extnded to the old studnets in organizing the ’Guruvandana’ function.

 

Mrs. Irene Mendonca proposed the vote of thanks. The entire programme was effectively anchored by Sri Alwyn Danti a renowned MC. 

 

 

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