On Thursday, May 17, the Arizona Chapter of the Vertical Flight Society hosted a STEM (science, technology engineering and mathematics) program to introduce vertical flight engineering concepts and applications to local high school students at the Phoenix Convention Center. Dr. Kendra Befort, an associate technical fellow at The Boeing Company, presented engaging insights into the history of automation and the influence it will have on future vertical flight technology.
The students were escorted throughout the Forum Exhibit Hall, where they spoke with college and industry representatives, tried their hands on multiple flight simulators and VR goggles, and saw several novel electric VTOL demonstrators for the first time. Students also learned about the various engineering disciplines they can pursue in college to create and advance these exciting innovations.
After lunch and a debrief, the students and their chaperones gave enthusiastic feedback on their exposure to vertical flight engineering, with several of them now influenced to consider careers in this field and to join Arizona State University's Vertical Flight Society student chapter.
This second year of providing high-school students with educational insights at the Forum was another successful STEM outreach activity intended to attract exceptional high school students to careers in vertical flight technology.
Special thanks to Joanne Baker, The Boeing Company for leading and organizing the event!