Posted: Thu 27th Jun 2024

Airbus rewards local students with exclusive BelugaXL tour

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales

Students from six local schools in North Wales and Cheshire were rewarded with a special behind-the-scenes visit to Airbus and its Beluga transporter as part of Airbus’ Beluga Award incentive.

The initiative aims to inspire young people in STEM subjects by rewarding improved attendance and grades.

Participating schools included Argoed, Ysgol Maes Garmon, Whitby High School, St Richard Gwyn High School, Hawarden High School, and St David’s High School.

During the visit, students learned about the crucial role the Beluga plays in transporting wings built in Broughton to Airbus’ final assembly lines in Germany and France.

They chatted with pilots, toured the A320 wing production line, and visited the onsite fire station. They also engaged with Airbus’ latest early career cohort.

Airbus Head of Supply Chain Operations UK, Paul Kilmister, expressed the significance of the event: “The Beluga Awards is a fantastic way to help inspire young people to realise their full potential.”

“By rewarding them with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see how we manufacture wings at Airbus and get onboard the Beluga, we aim to encourage improvements in their STEM studies over the nine-month programme.”

“I hope the visits leave a lasting impression, and we will be welcoming more than a few of the pupils who took part in this event back to our plant in the years ahead.”

Kayleigh Brummel from Careers Wales said: “We had a great day at Airbus. It was amazing to visit the fire station and understand the role the fire crew plays. Seeing and going on both the fire engine and Beluga has been a fantastic experience for the kids. Our hosts Colette Affaya, Harvey Tattum, Beth Owen, Benjamin Hughes, and Alicia Fairhurst were brilliant.”

Riley Edwards from St David’s High School said: “It’s been an amazing experience. Visiting the fire station and seeing the Beluga was brilliant. I’ve really enjoyed the visit and have learned lots of things about Airbus.”

Krysia Ballance, Assistant Curriculum Lead and Head of Product Design at Whitby High School, Cheshire, commented on the broader impact of the initiative: “Recognising and rewarding improvement is crucial. This trip has not only celebrated the students’ achievements but has also ignited a spark of curiosity and ambition. We are incredibly grateful to Airbus for hosting us and supporting our students’ growth.”

Isla Jones, a student at Whitby High School, said: “Seeing the Beluga up close and visiting the cockpit was amazing. It’s not something you get to see every day! It’s cool to see what options are out there for you when you leave school.”

This initiative highlights the importance of practical, real-world experiences in inspiring the next generation of engineers and scientists, reinforcing Airbus’ commitment to fostering educational growth in STEM subjects.

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