RAF Cranwell's Main Auditorium, Whittle Hall hosted the prestigious graduation ceremony to celebrate the Air & Space Institute (ASI), Peterborough and Stamford Air & Defence Colleges (ADC). The Graduation Ceremony marked a momentous occasion for the exceptional students in the Civil Aviation and Military & Defence fields, shared with their friends and families.
Commencing with a warm welcome from DComdt RAFC Group Captain Harry Harrison, his words acknowledged the dedication and hard work exhibited by the students throughout their education.
DComdt RAFC Group Captain Harry Harrison said: "Today, we celebrate these remarkable individuals, graduating from the Air and Defence Colleges of Peterborough and Stamford and Air and Space Institute, who stand at the threshold of greatness.
“Students carry the hopes and dreams of a nation poised to shape the future of Civil Aviation Military and Defence education. With unwavering determination and boundless potential, they are the next generation of leaders, forging their path in the skies and beyond. The ceremony marks a milestone in their careers, and with it, the promise of a safer and brighter tomorrow.”
Following the opening address and underscoring the significance of this milestone, Mark Locking, Principal and CEO of Lincoln College, said: "At this wonderful graduation ceremony, we gather to recognise and celebrate the outstanding achievements of our remarkable students. Their dedication and hard work have brought them to this significant milestone in their academic journey, and today we celebrate their commitment to excellence.”
The ceremony was further enhanced by a special video address from Baroness Vere, the esteemed UK Aviation Minister, emphasising the government's commitment to the aviation sector. Following the support from the Department for Transport.
Baroness Vere, Minister of Aviation, said: “You will be designing the future of aviation. And this is an industry that is undergoing a transformation larger than at any point in its history. It took 30 years to grow from our first commercial flight in 1919 to the world's first passenger jet in 1949. Now, that was a monumental achievement, but an achievement that we must now eclipse, because in less than 30 years, aviation, which has become wedded to fossil fuels over the last 100 years, must become carbon neutral or away.
“We're going to need your talent and your ingenuity to drive progress and your ingenuity to drive progress on things like sustainable aviation fuel, hydrogen fuel cells, more efficient production, and even fully battery electric aircraft. [All] new challenges which need a new and diverse generation of pilots, of engineers, programmers. We need everybody to help us solve these challenges. But of course, they are not just challenges, they are opportunities as well.”
A heartfelt expression of gratitude was extended to the ASI and ADC partners who played a vital role in delivering world-class education. The Department for Transport, Royal Air Force, Northrop Grumman, Leonardo, Raytheon, MASS, Eagle Eye Innovations, Inzpire, Affinity, Quiet Tiger Aviation and Pennant were recognised for their unwavering support in nurturing the talents of the students and ensuring their readiness for their careers.
Each institution recognised its exceptional students who stood out in their respective categories; Student of the Year - recognises students showcasing outstanding academic achievements and dedication. The Students’ student award is student-led; they have nominated a fellow classmate to recognise their efforts throughout their studies. In the Pursuit of Excellence, celebrates individuals committed to achieving greatness in their field - driving personal and professional growth, inspiring others to reach new heights.
Full list of student winners:
ASI (Military & Defence)
· Student of the Year: Owen Hunt
· Students' student: Amy Garner
· In the Pursuit of Excellence: Elizabeth Bedells
· Student of the Year: Alex Vickery
· Students' student: Danny Fenton
· Quiet Tiger Aviation Award: Lexie Jackson
· Quiet Tiger Aviation Award: Krystian Skrzypczak
· Student of the Year: Lucas Phillips
· Students' student: Andrew Airwele
· In the Pursuit of Excellence: Kimberley McConnell-Wilson
· Student of the Year: Tobias Tinsley
· Students' student: Harrison Swinscoe
· In the Pursuit of Excellence: Abby Rowley
Graduating from the Air, Space and Defence programmes represents the culmination of hard work and dedication, marking the transition from the academic environment to employment. It is a significant milestone as they embark on their impactful careers and begin applying their knowledge and skills in real-world situations.
Our specialised training and education equip students with the necessary skills and expertise to serve in various roles within the Armed Forces or Defence and Civil Aviation industries. Graduation confirms that the students have successfully completed all elements of their programmes, demonstrating their competence in areas such as leadership, Civil Aviation communication and team skills whilst also developing the knowledge, technical skills and behaviours to be successful in their chosen sector and career path.
Baroness of Vere, Minister of Aviation, said: “We're going to need your talent and your ingenuity to drive progress and your ingenuity to drive progress on things like sustainable aviation fuel, hydrogen fuel cells, more efficient production, and even fully battery electric aircraft. [All] new challenges which need a new and diverse generation of pilots, of engineers, programmers. We need everybody to help us solve these challenges. But of course, they are not just challenges, they are opportunities as well.”
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