50 years – A tribute to the Faculty of Engineering

A vibrant presence of fifty years. Six words that attempt to embrace all that the book wishes to say. Six words that intend to give a sign, state an identity, summarize a history, and at the same time convey a message and a promise for the future. Because when the past is left alone it becomes a museum piece, lifeless and dead, that only serves to preserve memory. On the contrary, when it is connected to the future, it determines what is to follow, as a guide that sets goals and predefines evolution.

Why is it now the time for such a recording of memory, for a statement about life and its future prospects? What willpower dictates the writing of this book? Just a simple inner impulse or a predefined purpose?

None of that alone or everything at once. Fifty years may not seem a long enough period, to justify such a record. However, fifty years are enough for us to start losing everything that has remained alive till now. It is the limit that defines a lifecycle, the limit beyond which a generation finds it hard to meet the next. And then, gradually, day by day, year by year, everything begins to fade. Events fade, along with the memories that sustain them, and their history itself is also lost. And whatever has no history, has no past. Thus, this jubilee is nothing more than a good pretext.

This book could be regarded as a small historical album, a brief life manual, which collects, records and presents a series of situations and events, people and things, actions and reactions, which all together tend to have something in common, i.e. their coexistence in the same place at the same time, sharing common experiences and the same references. They follow parallel paths that were joined together in a stable relationship of life and expectation, whose every moment seemed to shift from the present and take an irreversible leap into the past, becoming an indelible and everlasting mark, always at the ready to remind us of events, foster associations and reconstruct images. Pages of paper filled with words and pictures, depicting memories that were not allowed to fade, but were kept alive instead through the passage of time.

(Excerpt from A tribute to the 50-year anniversary of the Faculty of Engineering)