Project ENGAP - Engaging the Next Generation of Aviation Professionals marks its first anniversary today with news they are making significant inroads into global challenges facing sustainable air travel.
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In a year that has seen unprecedented pressure on the aviation industry, Project ENGAP is navigating a route to recovery focusing on three main pillars, people, environment and technology.
In an international online briefing today, UK aviation professional Simon Witts, one of the Project ENGAP’s founders and Chairman of ENGAP UK, a Community Interest Company, will set out ways they are meeting the global challenges for recovery.
They have welcomed the huge strides forward made on aircraft emissions and the improved environmental impact and the march to keep ahead of constantly evolving technology.
Their sights are now firmly set on finding future talent to fill a predicted shortfall in professionals in the air and space sector.
Simon, who is also CEO of specialist aviation consultancy Aviation 360, said: “As we discuss what form recovery will take, we will also report on the progress we have made in the UK, Canada and the USA where we will be shifting up a few gears in the coming weeks as the world starts flying again.”
Project ENGAP was originally set up to meet the challenges of finding the right people for global air and space jobs, initially through three ENGAP collaborations in the UK, Canada and the USA.
It began in March 2020 with the book Engaging the Next Generation of Aviation Professionals, by Canadian author, academic, and professor of aviation Suzanne Kearns with a chapter written by Simon Witts.
As well as attracting the next generation of aviation professionals, it is a platform to raise awareness for stakeholders and the education community.
Simon has also created the UK’s first International Air and Space Institute (IASTI) to transform the way pilots and future astronauts, engineers and ground staff are trained. The first - IASTI Newark, in Nottinghamshire – and a partnership with Lincoln College Group opens to students in September this year, and advanced talks are underway to open more around the UK this year.
The IASTIs will work in conjunction with Project ENGAP, both in the UK and across the Atlantic where there are plans to collaborate with similar institutes in other countries, including Canada and the USA.
They aim to produce the next generation of skills-matched professionals, providing a shop window for airlines to acquire fully-qualified trained pilots, who could go on to train as future astronauts, engineers and ground staff. It also offers the potential for future military cooperation.