I’ll be the first to admit that I am a Boeing guy. It’s not that Airbus makes a bad plane, I am just your stereotypical prideful American that wants all of the best stuff to come from the states. So sue me. (please don’t, I can’t afford it)
I have written in the past about some of the cool things that Airbus is doing to educate and inspire young people to pursue aviation like the Fly Your Ideas Challenge and the Airbus Lycée. I’m happy to see that Boeing is following suit with their newest joint venture with South African Airways.
One of the things that I spend a lot of time thinking about these days is how to get young people, including my own kids, excited about aviation. Kids like my son are easy because they just love airplanes, but there are so many that never even see a life in aviation as a possibility because they don’t realize all of the opportunities that exist.
That is why this venture is so cool.
Boeing and South African Airways have taken a normal shipping container and turned it into a mock up NextGen 737 including a flight deck, passenger cabin, and even a demonstration engine. This is the kind of hands on experience that kids need to really spark their interest in aviation and inspire them to pursue a career.
What makes this shipping container aircraft even more valuable is that it is accompanied by actual people who have careers in aviation that can show the kids that anything is possible. They can be role models for these young South Africans and give them hope that they can actually pursue their dreams no matter how lofty they may be.
As a kid I always loved airplanes and would stop playing to look up as they flew over my house. That really hasn’t changed since I grew up, and I hope to find a way to do my part with inspiring young people who have the same dreams that I did, but just don’t know how to make it a reality.
I’m glad to see that Boeing and South African Airways are doing their part as well.