2024-03-25 EAST TIMOR

19th ICFP Graduation ceremony in Baucau

The Instituto Cat├│lico Para a FormaĎź├úo de Professores (ICFP), in Baucau, Timor-Leste, held on 16th March its 19th Graduation ceremony. Over five hundred people gathered at the Baucau Cathedral to participated in the ceremony led by Padre Alipio Pinto, Vicar General of the Diocese of Baucau. Among the participants were Br Paul Gilchrist, Director of ICFP, Br Robert Speare representing the Marist Provincial (Br. Peter Carroll); Dr. Jos├ę Honorio, Minister of Higher Education, Dr. Nilton Paiva Mau,

 Executive Director of the National Agency for Academic Assessment and Accreditation (ANAAA), Ms. Maria Filomena Lay (Director-General, Ministry of Higher Education and Science), and various dignitaries from the Municipality of Baucau. And from Australia participated Mr and Mrs Ian and Morianne MacRichie, from the eMerge Foundation from Sydney, and Mr and Mrs Tony and Sue Heelan, parents of Michael, Marist volunteer.

At the end of the mass, the whole group then moved to the Merkadu for the next stage of the program. Br Paul, the Director, welcomed everyone, the special guests, the graduates, and their families. Padre Alipio then awarded the Bachelor of Teaching degree to seventy-five students, the biggest ever group of recipients in the history of the Institute. After a short interlude when the graduates sang the InstituteÔÇÖs song, he then awarded the Bachelor of Education degree (Licentiate) to fifty students. The major prize winners were then announced, and scholarships were awarded by the eMerge Foundation and other donor groups to some students.

The Minister of Higher Education, Dr. Jos├ę Honorio, congratulated the students on their achievements, while Dr. Augusta da Costa, the special guest speaker encouraged the students to continue their learning.

A feature of the ceremony was the graduation of the first two Timorese Marist Brothers at the Institute, Br. Jacinto Anacleto Fuli Falo, and Br. Melquiano Obe. During their time at the Institute, both have been extraordinary contributors. It is worth mentioning that Br. Melqui was not able to be present, as he is currently working at the Marist Lavalla School in Phnom Penh, in Cambodia.

As the formalities came to a close everyone sat down to a delicious meal together. The festivities concluded in the afternoon.

“ICFP is certainly fulfilling its mission to provide outstanding teachers to the schools of Timor-Leste. At this stage in the life of ICFP, 937 students have now graduated from the Bachelor of Teaching program, and 261 have received the Licentiate degree. May the vision and the good work continue!”, said Br. Paul Gilchrist, Director ICFP.

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