Developing Fine Young Men

I wish to share a story with you that I first told in 2013 and has since made its way around Catholic schools in this state and across the country. It had its genesis on the Italian Arts Tour of 2013.

During that amazing trip, organised by Ms Calanni and Ms Francis, we traversed the many sites of Italy with the gentlemen of CBC. I had been a constant visitor to Italy since my first trip there in 1972, and since globalisation, had noticed a steep decline in the manufacturing hubs and even in the sites that still existed, there was hardly an Italian artisan to be seen. The flow-on effect in Italy has been a loss of national pride, massive underemployment and a loss of joy and sparkle in the eyes. I haven't been for a couple of years now and hope the recent Euros and Olympics have been a fillip for the country of my ancestors, but in 2013 all everyone would talk about was 'la crise'. Everyone except a group of factory workers we met in Sant'Agata Bolognese.

group-photo.jpgFor the motoring enthusiasts, this town is where the emblematic supercar Lamborghini is manufactured and in 2013 the boys and staff walked the entire assembly line of the V10 Gallardo. We watched the forging of the blocks, the assembly of the engines, the leather room where each seat, steering wheel and interior are pieced together by hand using the finest full grain nappa leather. We took in the spray painting, electrics and windscreen assembly and even the first time the engine is turned over. Every step of the process is individually signed off so that, in the event of a fault after manufacture, the worker can be identified and training provided to avoid a repetition. Apparently, there are no third chances.

As we walked through the factory, I noticed that the expressions I had become used to on the faces of most Italians we met was curiously absent on the faces of these workers. At the end of the day, I asked the supervisor what was their secret. Why were these workers so seemingly happy? She smiled and responded that, although the company employed spray painters, foundry workers, leather seamstresses, mechanics, auto-electricians and a myriad of other operatives who beavered away all day every day in their particular section, every employee ended their day by exiting the factory at the exact point that the latest Gallardo rolled off the line. Regardless of their role, their occupation, their contribution, big or small, the last thing they saw as they headed for their evening Aperitivo was the finished product. When they were asked what do you do, they did not reply 'I'm a mechanic' or 'I'm a seamstress' or 'I'm a spray painter'; they replied 'I make Lamborghinis', and that was the reason for their pride, countenance and spirit. Making something beautiful brings as much joy to the worker as the feeling one has when receiving something beautiful.

 The leave formed, they leave proud and they leave as an adult.

lamborghini-factory-tour_0347-720x720.jpgThe last week of Term 3 is a bittersweet moment for all who work at CBC Fremantle and the Year 12 gentlemen who leave us today. I have interviewed each one of them and I know that they have taken every advantage their parents and school has provided. They leave formed, they leave proud and they leave as an adult. When that hauntingly beautiful music starts and the Year 7 students reciprocate the guard of honour that was afforded them at the beginning of the year, the wheel will have turned full circle. It is a beautiful moment that many people can justifiably be proud of and I hope the boys can be grateful for. Can I thank everyone who has played a part; big or small, central or peripheral, directly or indirectly. I hope that at CBC Fremantle we make Lamborghinis, and I also hope that all our community feel the pride of such an undertaking. To all who have contributed to this latest thread in the CBC Fremantle tapestry, it is a job well done, and on your behalf can I use this opportunity to thank and congratulate the Class of 2021 on their legacy and leadership. Good luck and God bless you all.

God bless,

Mr Domenic Burgio