Quebec’s aerospace sector targets young aviators
April 27, 2012, Mirabel, Que. - Aéro Montréal, Québec's aerospace
cluster, today reaffirmed its commitment to encouraging students in
school, unveiling a series of scientific presentations entitled "The sky
is the limit!"
By Carey Fredericks
The presentations are aimed at demystifying the aerospace industry and
promoting rewarding careers in the sector to Grade 5 and 6 students
attending schools in the Laurentians.
"To encourage young people to build their dreams and nurture their
professional aspirations, the aerospace sector has decided to get
involved at the elementary school level. Through a fun guided
educational activity, the initiative helps make students aware of
careers in science and technology, introducing them to experts who work
with aerospace companies and who are true role models for the younger
generation," said Suzanne M. Benoît, president of Aéro Montréal.
"Many new qualified workers will be needed over the next few years to
meet industry needs. If we want the Greater Montreal region to remain at
the forefront of the global aerospace sector, we need to lay the
groundwork now by sparking and maintaining interest among a new
generation of skilled workers. This initiative is highly stimulating and
promising, and Pratt & Whitney Canada is proud to be associated
with it," added Kevin Smith, vice president, human resources, at Pratt
& Whitney Canada.
This innovative initiative was launched in association with the Conseil
du Loisir Scientifique de la région Métropolitaine (CLSM) and the
Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Foundation Canada, with financial
support from the Conférence régionale des élus des Laurentides (CRÉ) and
the participation of aerospace giants such as Pratt & Whitney
Canada, Bombardier Aerospace, L-3 MAS, Bell Helicopter Textron Canada,
Messier-Bugatti-Dowty and Sonaca Montréal. It gives young people a
chance to put themselves in the shoes of an aerospace engineer through
interactive activities in the classroom.
Working in teams, these budding engineers compete to build airplanes, in
accordance with the laws of physics that apply to such concepts as
aerodynamics, inherent in the construction of an aircraft. Technicians
and engineers from companies with operations in the Laurentians region
also participate in the classroom activities and share their career
experiences with the students.
This tour of scientific presentations began as a pilot project in 2010
in the Longueuil region, where hundreds of elementary school students
were introduced to the aerospace sector. In the Laurentians, nearly 50
elementary schools, in Blainville, Boisbriand, Bois-des-Filion,
Brownsburg-Chatham, Deux-Montagnes, Lorraine, Mirabel, Rosemere,
Sainte-Anne-des-Plaines, Saint-Eustache, Saint-Jérome,
Saint-Joseph-du-Lac, Sainte-Marthe-sur-le-Lac, Sainte-Thérèse and
Terrebonne, from a variety of socioeconomic backgrounds, have
participated in the program. At the end of this pilot project, nearly
4,500 Grade 5 and 6 students in the Laurentians will have taken part in
the interactive scientific sessions.