School To Skies For Hannah

May 05, 2021 at 2:02 PM

Whilst her peers may have taken the chance to kick back and relax during the April school holidays, Year 13 student, Hannah Riley took on a wonderful opportunity to further her learning at a week-long immersion camp run by the New Zealand Defence Force at the Airforce Base in Ohakea.

This opportunity is offered to girls in Year 13 from around New Zealand who are currently studying a Level 3 NCEA (or equivalent) maths and science subject. The aim is to give young women hands-on experience to show how STEM subjects (science, maths, engineering and technology) can translate to a career in a technical or aviation field - and how this could be fulfilled in the Air Force.

For Hannah it was a week full of ‘awesome activities’ and a very interesting insight into life in an Air Force career. She said, ‘We were introduced to many trades the Air Force have to offer and were able to get a first-hand experience of how STEM is applied in the real world. We looked at avionics, non-destructive testing, ground service equipment technicians, machinists and fire flight just to name a few.’

‘Over the week, we were also lucky enough to have a military psychologist come and talk to us about resilience and leadership. Many other panels and guest speakers talked to us regarding these ideas, too, including the Chief of the RNZAF, well-known scientist, Nano-girl and corporate partners of the Air Force. As well as all this, we talked and interacted with communications and intelligence specialists, air warfare officers, helicopter loadmasters and pilots - we even flew a helicopter simulator! However, the highlight of the week would definitely have to be the flight in the NH90 helicopter!’

Programme leader, Flight Lieutenant Emma Raven said, ‘The programme has been running since 2017 at Whenuapai, Ōhakea and Woodbourne Air Force bases, aiming to encourage women to consider Air Force careers after studying STEM subjects – science, technology, engineering and maths. During the week-long programme, the girls interact with airmen and airwomen in the trades, who are employed in technical and aviation roles. Giving these young women role models for them to look up to, and aspire to become, has proven to be an essential component of the experience.”

Hannah thoroughly enjoyed her taste of life on an Air Force base that was filled with learning and fun, and ‘facilitated great friendships with likeminded individuals.’ She highly recommends this camp to anyone interested in STEM subjects, the Air Force and other ‘practical, hands-on subjects’ to get insight into how these interests could lead into a future career.

Finding my ‘Future Me’
At Saint Kentigern, our focus is not just on the ‘now’ but also firmly on the ‘future’ of our students – who and what they will become beyond the College gates - helping our students to discover their ‘Future Me.’

The Student Futures Department at the College supports and facilitates our students’ preparation for the transition from College to future tertiary study, employment or gap experiences, in order for them to progress into successful and fulfilling futures in the world of work and study.

Click here to read more about how we help our students through this transition:


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