During the first day, about 25 Salesian VT leaders from Italy, France, Germany, Ukraine, Poland, Hungary and Spain spoke about how to revitalize, improve, expand and coordinate the Salesian Technical-Vocational Centers in Europe. The General Councilor for Youth Ministry, Fr Fabio Attard, emphasized the need to assume a vision of leadership in order to strengthen and increase Vocational Training.
Also presented: how VT functioned in the Spanish educational system; the experience of exchange students with other Salesian centers across Europe; the dual school-VT of Spain and Italy, and Erasmus+ program of overseas apprenticeship.
On the second day, company representatives from the companies collaborating with the Salesian VT centers joined the meeting: Neobis, FEDA, Clece, FIAT Chrysler Automobili (FCA, Spain), Hoffmann Group, Robert Bosch (Spain), Schneider Electric (Spain), Tetra Pak, Xerox (Spain) and ENI (Italy). Discussions focused on the relationship between Salesians in Europe and companies, curating and coordinating reciprocal needs, and the inclusion of VT pupils into the firms and the job market.
Juan Seoane, of the German Dual Entrepreneurial Training (FEDA), presented the training experience that the "Salesianos Atocha" center is carrying out in collaboration with the German Chamber of Commerce. Then there was a round table discussion on the different models of formative collaboration of the Salesian centers.
A profile of the modern 21st century student was then drawn. What the companies look for are: technically qualified professionals, with special attention to the use of new technologies, the knowledge of various languages, a commercial or business mindset, communication skills and the ability to work in a team; also, the importance to the human formation of the pupil: integrity, responsibility, humility and the desire to learn are some of the values that businesses recognize and acknowledge in Salesian students.
Fr Fabio Attard concluded the meeting by saying that events of this kind are "an opportunity to continue with our efforts and commitment in the accompaniment of young people." In this regard, he pointed out that for many young people, Vocatonal Training was their last chance to secure and guarantee a future for themselves.