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Five weeks of Flying Challenge

Five weeks of Flying Challenge

It’s been five weeks since the launch of the Airbus Foundation Flying Challenge in Filton and Broughton. At each site, 20 students are attending weekly sessions to learn about aviation.

​In Filton, the students from Bristol Metropolitan Academy have:

  • learnt about the theory of flight and current aircraft design
  • visited the wind tunnel wind facility
  • constructed their own model aircraft

During the fifth session this week, students tested their models for the first time.

They were given the opportunity to build a second model aircraft with their new knowledge in mind, and to improve their model making skills.

Faolan Stephenson, one of Filton’s Flying Challenge students, said; “The whole programme has been a lot of fun so far, but this session was definitely the highlight. It’s really interesting learning about the theory of flight but seeing it put into practice is brilliant.”

In Broughton, the students from Ysgol Treffynnon have:

  • learnt about biomimicry and the theory of flight from Chester Zoo
  • built their own gliders
  • delivered a pitch following a special tour of the A380 wing manufacturing facility

The cohort’s fifth session this week focused on Airfield Operations, along with a chance to see the Airbus’ very own Beluga. The students were given a once-in-a-lifetime chance to visit the air traffic control tower, where they got an insight into the work of an air traffic controller.

Ms. Raducanescu, lead teacher for Science & Technology at Ysgol Treffynnon, said; “Our students feel very privileged to have the opportunity and the school is equally proud of them. We are delighted to see the excitement on their faces after every session. They all come away buzzing and feeling inspired.”

Students from Ysgol Treffynnon getting ready to test fly their glider at Broughton

George Jenkins, one of the lead mentors on the Filton programme, said; “Even after just five sessions it’s clear to see just how much the students have developed their technical knowledge, confidence, and teamwork. I’m excited to see how much they’ll have learned by the end of the year.”
There are another five weekly sessions to come in the lead up to Christmas, during which the students will continue developing skills such as self-management, communication, teamwork, and producing a product.
The Flying Challenge Programme provides 13-14 year olds with a unique insight into the aerospace industry. Dedicated Airbus people mentor the students, developing the confidence, self-esteem and motivation for continuing their education. Some of the highlights coming up along the year include having their own flying lesson and earning themselves a nationally recognised qualification.