Open day encourages girls to pursue careers in aviation


NATS, the UK’s air traffic control provider, opened its doors to 40 young women last week as part of a campaign to encourage girls into aviation and aerospace careers.

The girls and young women, aged between 13-21, met air traffic controllers and engineers, while enjoying a day of interactive talks, tours and activities aimed at helping them discover more about STEM (science, technology, maths and engineering) related careers.

The event, coined Future Minds, was held at NATS’ Head Office in Whiteley and Control Centre in Swanwick.

As well as learning about the future of air traffic control, NATS was joined by Fledglink, makers of an early careers app, to give advice on creating CVs and preparing for interviews. 

Julie Elder, HR & Corporate Services Director, said: “NATS is committed to encouraging more young women to consider pursuing STEM related subjects, so we’re really pleased that the day was so successful.

“Air traffic control is a fascinating business that’s a critical part of the UK’s national infrastructure, so we hope the day gave the girls a good insight into the exciting opportunities on offer.”

NATS is one of over 120 signatories to have signed the Women in Aviation and Aerospace Charter in 2018; a Government initiative aimed at increasing gender balance across the industry.  Since last summer, the number of women working at NATS has grown and a training programme to teach employees about unconscious bias has been launched. 

Julie said: “By working with girls from a young age, we hope NATS can encourage them to think more about their career options and the wide range of opportunities available to them.”

Future Minds follows on from the success of previous Bring Your Daughter to Work days, reaching out beyond employees’ family members.

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