Mar 01, 2018
Every time the Fly Your Ideas launch comes around, there is a perceptible buzz in the air at Airbus, generated by the unique opportunity the competition gives us to engage with future talent and to exchange with participants on the future of the aeronautical industry.
For participants, Airbus Fly Your Ideas is not just another competition: it is specifically designed to create a platform for the development of professional and personal skills for the workplace, such as project management, team work, creative thinking, presentation skills, innovation and inter-cultural skills. Taking part provides an unparalleled development and CV building experience.
To take part, student teams must come up with innovative solutions for real world industry challenges and share their ideas with leading professionals. The competition offers opportunities to interact with senior industry specialists and mentors at Airbus and - for those who reach the final - access to our state-of-the art facilities, to work side-by-side with our innovators. For all these reasons, Fly Your Ideas is a unique opportunity to bridge the gap between university and industry and to develop the skills needed to step into the future. We asked former Fly Your Ideas participants about the skills they developed during the competition, and their academic or career progress since taking part. Here’s what they said:
For Qinsang (Team Aft Burner Reverser, 2015) Fly Your Ideas “was really a great competition which expanded my horizons. I learned how to work as part of a team and communicate with people from other countries. The competition enhanced my self-confidence allowing me to do better during my education and then in my job interview.”
Michael (Team AVAS, 2013), “I credit my Airbus Fly Your Ideas experience in gaining admission to the University of Southampton to do my Masters. The lessons I learnt shaped the way I perceive tasks put to me, and I continue to develop my work ethic based on what I observed in Airbus employees.”
Mario (Team GrossoModo, 2015) feels that “thanks to Fly Your Ideas, I developed a strong connection with my colleagues, who now are my best friends. I also really improved my workplace skills, like organizing meetings, brainstorming new ideas and working to tight schedules.”
And as a member of 2013’s Team Embarker said, “Recruiters were amazed when I shared my Airbus Fly Your Ideas experience with them.”
While some participants have gone on to careers in aviation, others are working in academia or in new professional fields related to innovation or digital design.
Kerry (Team Aquarius, 2017) has just embarked on a workplace learning opportunity with Airbus, “following the competition, I completed three semesters of my double degree in Aviation and Business Management at RMIT in Australia then took up a 9-month internship with Airbus Defence and Space in Germany, as a Space Systems Strategist.”
Michael (Team Coz, 2009), is now a Senior lecturer at the University of Queensland where he leads a research group in composite materials and processes. When thinking about the impact the competition had on his development he mentions, “The presentation skills I picked up as part of the event and the memories are still with me 8 years later.”
Lucas (Team Retrolley, 2015) has built on his Fly Your Ideas finalist experience by securing an exciting job at a Brazilian digital agency, “I work as a User Experience Designer helping start-ups and big brands innovate on their mobile technology strategies.”
When asked if they would recommend the competition to other students, this is what they said:
Anil (Team Aquarius, 2017): “I would recommend any student to participate in the Fly Your Ideas competition. Not only is it a good experience for students within the engineering field, but it engenders collaboration with students, academic, industry members, and mentors from different backgrounds and fields. The beauty of this competition is the network and friends you make for your own professional development.”
Hayden (DAELead, 2017 winning team) reveals what an inspiration the competition has been for him, “The Airbus Fly Your Ideas experience has inspired me to pursue my career further in aviation, whether with Airbus or another company. I would really like to move abroad to either France, UK, or head back to Canada for my future career.”
And the experience is what motivated Adrian (Team Flybrid, 2013) to move into a different cultural environment, “When I went to the Airbus Fly Your Ideas final in 2013 I realised how important it is to have a good level of English within this sector. That´s why, when I finished my Aerospace Engineer degree and an Aerospace MBA (part of an Airbus programme) in Spain I looked for a job in the UK. And after more than 2 years, I am still working in England.”
Kosi (Team Nevada, 2017), summed it up for us: “The world needs innovators. Airbus Fly Your Ideas will not only give you the skills required it is also a CV booster.”