High-fly­ing en­gi­neers

CLARE BURGESS on a new course which will pro­duce the next gen­er­a­tion of avi­a­tion tech­ni­cians

EDP Norfolk - - Education -

NOR­WICH IS gear­ing up to wel­come the coun­try’s first In­ter­na­tional Avi­a­tion Academy to help as­pir­ing avi­a­tion en­gi­neers start their jour­ney to­wards a high-fly­ing ca­reer. Suc­cess­ful ap­pli­cants will study at a spe­cial­ist cen­tre next to Nor­wich In­ter­na­tional Air­port where they will com­bine ad­vanced aca­demic study with prac­ti­cal ex­pe­ri­ence that has the po­ten­tial for stu­dents to en­ter high level em­ploy­ment soon af­ter grad­u­at­ing.

The avi­a­tion engi­neer­ing cour­ses are run in part­ner­ship with KLM UK Engi­neer­ing, who are based next to the academy and have over 30 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence in air­craft tech­ni­cal train­ing as well as main­te­nance. The five-year study pro­gramme will see stu­dents spend­ing the first two years learn­ing the ba­sic prin­ci­ples of avi­a­tion engi­neer­ing be­fore pro­gress­ing on to a three-year Bach­e­lor of Sci­ence de­gree ac­cred­ited by the Univer­sity of East Anglia.

Course leader Stu­art Mackay has ex­pe­ri­enced the fan­tas­tic op­por­tu­ni­ties that this in­dus­try has to of­fer. Af­ter study­ing engi­neer­ing at City Col­lege Nor­wich 40 years ago, Stu­art trav­elled around the world work­ing in a va­ri­ety of op­er­a­tional and man­age­rial po­si­tions in the sec­tor. He now com­bines his ex­pert pro­fes­sional knowl­edge with his love of aero­nau­tics to teach the next gen­er­a­tion of avi­a­tion en­gi­neers.

“Suc­cess­ful avi­a­tion en­gi­neers are dis­ci­plined, mo­ti­vated and hard-work­ing with a pas­sion for air­craft and aero­nau­tics. Their job is to en­sure an air­craft is safe to fly by car­ry­ing out each task to ex­cep­tion­ally high stan­dards and within in­cred­i­bly high tol­er­ances which can some­times mean work­ing in ex­treme con­di­tions. There are no lay­bys or break­down ser­vices at 37,000ft so it is the job of an engi­neer to use the tools and ma­te­ri­als avail­able to cre­ate some­thing to a high de­gree of ex­cel­lence and pre­ci­sion be­cause peo­ple’s lives de­pend on it,” said Stu­art

“To start work­ing on an air­craft un­su­per­vised, you need a Cat­e­gory B li­cence from the Euro­pean Avi­a­tion Safety Agency (EASA) along­side two to three years of prac­ti­cal ex­pe­ri­ence. The Nor­wich In­ter­na­tional Avi­a­tion Academy pro­vides our de­gree level stu­dents with the op­por­tu­nity to work to­wards this li­cense by al­low­ing them to gain prac­ti­cal ex­pe­ri­ence on a re­cently re­tired air­craft from KLM’s fleet dur­ing the three year qual­i­fi­ca­tion. The academy will also al­low high-per­form­ing Level 3 stu­dents to gain their Cat­e­gory A EASA li­cense be­fore pro­gress­ing on to de­gree level.

“Due to the unique style of this ad­vanced train­ing, suc­cess­ful stu­dents will have the qual­i­fi­ca­tions to en­ter highly-skilled and well-paid em­ploy­ment soon af­ter grad­u­at­ing. Work­ing as an avi­a­tion engi­neer is more than just a job, it is a re­mark­able ca­reer which will see those who have got what it takes se­cur­ing in­ter­est­ing and sus­tain­able em­ploy­ment any­where in the world.”

Stu­dents at CCN

The IAAN

Stu­art Mackay works with a stu­dent

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