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Aerospace Day to encourage women into engineering

Press release issued: 4 April 2017

Students from local schools will be at the University of Bristol tomorrow [Wednesday 5 April] for the second Airbus Aerospace Outreach Day to promote aerospace engineering as an exciting and achievable career for women.

The event, hosted by the Faculty of Engineering and organised by the Industrial Liaison Office, will engage Year 8 girls [aged 12-to-13-year-olds] with aerospace engineering activities.  The day will include lectures from academics, students and industrial experts.  There will be hands-on lab activities, including the testing of a spaghetti-like wing in the wind tunnel and learning to fly an aircraft in a static flight simulator.  The students will also have the opportunity to discuss studies and career decisions.

Airbus is a close industrial partner of the University's Faculty of Engineering and the aim of the Airbus Aerospace Outreach Day is to encourage more women to take up STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects.

Sixty girls will be attending the event from schools in the Bristol and North Somerset areas.  During the day the students will learn about the science involved in flight and compete in a fly-off competition with a prize for the best plane.

In advance of the event, the students have been asked to prepare a poster on what they think the flying machine of the future will look like.  The posters will be on display during the day and the students will have the opportunity to vote for the best design idea.

Professor Andrew Nix, Dean of Engineering, said: "Today's Airbus Aerospace Outreach Day is one of our many outreach initiatives.  Hopefully this visit will inspire more women into engineering and excite them about what they can achieve in the future.

"The Faculty is committed to training, education and diversity and we want to address the ambition across the UK of ensuring women have the same opportunities in areas that have in the past been dominated by men."

Carren Holden, Airbus ambassador, said: "I am passionate about championing women in engineering so it is always a pleasure to meet and to try to inspire young women in as wide a group as possible to become tomorrow's engineers. With engineering talent shortages envisaged in coming years, female students represent a relatively untapped potential for engineering and in my view we should do as much as possible to let them know how they can have wonderful careers in aerospace to fill this gap.

"It will be great to see the enthusiasm of the students on the day, giving them the chance to meet women engineers from Airbus, who are excellent ambassadors for the business and for engineering as a career choice."

Further information

About Airbus
Airbus is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. In 2016, it generated revenues of € 67 billion and employed a workforce of around 134,000. Airbus offers the most comprehensive range of passenger airliners from 100 to more than 600 seats. Airbus is also a European leader providing tanker, combat, transport and mission aircraft, as well as Europe’s number one space enterprise and the world’s second largest space business. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions worldwide.

About the Industrial Liaison Office
The University of Bristol’s Industrial Liaison Office manages and develops relationships with the Faculty of Engineering’s many industrial partners across a range of activities.

If you would like your company to get involved in working with the Faculty, please contact Dr Katharine Blackwell, Industrial Liaison Manager, email or tel: +44 (0)117 954 5483.


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