Students from Bristol Metropolitan Academy paid a visit to City of Bristol College’s Advanced Engineering Centre (AEC) on Wednesday 4 March as part of the Airbus Flying Challenge, which saw the students experience work in the aviation industry and encourage them to consider a future in the field.
The group of 20 pupils were given a tour of the facility at the AEC at Parkway which includes three separate workshops as well as the machine workshop, the CAD/CAM room, wind tunnel and the main aircraft maintenance workshop.
After being shown around, the pupils watched a presentation titled ‘What is Engineering?’ and were taught the basics of an aircraft flight. The pupils were shown around into the aircraft maintenance workshop and given a demonstration about the mechanical systems of an aircraft.
Each pupil took a turn sitting in the cockpit of AEC’s in-house plane where they took charge of the controls and various buttons and levers that the pilot would use in order to fly the plane.
It was then time for a bit of friendly competition and team building as pupils were put into their Airbus groups and were tasked with building a jet pack engine kit. They learned key skills including team work, leadership and task delegation and sharing.
The final activity was how each pupil had to pick a different type of paper plane – such as the dragonfly, raptor and concord – and continuously test it and modify it to travel the best distance.
Lecturer and EAL Level 3 Programme Leader, Mark Gabey, said: “We would like to thank everyone who attended to sample what the college provides for pupils and apprentices who want to pursue a career in this industry.
“A great day was had by all and hopefully this has helped give pupils a glimpse of what aviation career paths are out there to pursue in the future.”
Programme Delivery Co-Ordinator, Georgina Godfree, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to City of Bristol College’s Engineering department for kindly hosting the Airbus Flying Challenge students. The event is aimed at engaging the group with career and further education opportunities relating to aviation, so it was brilliant to showcase where the Airbus apprentices study.
“The students thoroughly enjoyed the ‘Build an Engine’ Challenge and learning about the Theory of Flight and Flight Controls – which will come in very handy for their reward of Flying Lessons in the summer!”
Find out more about our different Aircraft Engineering courses here.