The congress, which discussed and developed the theme "The pedagogical model of Don Bosco" was attended by Salesians, Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, professors from Salesian universities and schools, collaborators, international guests and students from various faculties of the Polytechnic University of Quito.
"I encourage the University to continue to deepen the dialogue of Salesian pedagogical practice with the academic world, to enrich the exchange between communities of similar import, and to re-signify our inheritance received from a reflective educator such as Don Bosco," said the Salesian Provincial of Ecuador, Fr Francisco Sánchez, in the opening speech.
For his part, Fr Marcelo Farfán, General Coordinator of the Salesian Institutions of Higher Education (IUS), spoke on the theme: "Why is it important to approach the Salesian pedagogical model?" He thus explained how the pastoral educational model is the most extraordinary synthesis offered by Salesians, which can be summarized in the phrase: to educate by evangelizing and to evangelize by educating. Moreover, it is a model that is present in every Salesian presence: oratories, parishes, schools, boarding schools ...
During the three working days of the congress there were various other reports, which examined such themes as: the transformations of Salesian educational practices from the oratory to the university; the changes that affect the same universities in this post-digital era; the first stages of popular education; the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals in relation to the Salesian commitment to education; some digital tools to modernize teaching and learning; the preventive presence on the street; and more.
Other noteworthy activities include the presentation of the book "Liderazgo preventivo en la universidad" by the Salesian Fr Alejandro Rodríguez; and the round table entitled "Politicize school or school politics?"
"The Congress continues: I invite everyone to continue working and to seek and research so that this Salesian style, this way of carrying out a Salesian educational method (.....) from the lay point of view, which is not exactly the same as the religious point of view, we begin to make it universal," said the UPS Quito Rector in the event's concluding message.
The next appointment is scheduled for 2020, on the theme: "Youth protagonism in the Salesian project."