BATHURST has joined the push to get more women working in aviation.
A special event was held at Bathurst Aerodrome on Friday for female students from Denison College Bathurst High, who ranged from Year 7 through to Year 12.
The students had a packed schedule to keep them busy, attending talks and participating in hangar tours, flight simulations and going up in the air for real.
PanAir senior base pilot Tammy Camilleri, also the head of safety and operations, said the point of the day was to introduce young women to the world of aviation and hopefully inspire them to pursue careers in the industry.
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Although the situation is improving, women are still very under represented in all fields of aviation.
Ms Camilleri said that women make up less than three per cent of the engineering workforce, only five per cent of commercial pilots are women, and the percentage of female air traffic controllers is around 12 per cent.
Women in management roles in aviation is less than two per cent and the number of women involved in policy making and aviation law is also really low.
Ms Camilleri said that women don't often consider aviation, nor do they realise that there are many pathways into the industry.
It is hoped that further education about the possibilities will encourage more young women to consider careers in aviation.
"It's opening up their eyes to the many opportunities that are available and the diversity of the careers; you can move through your career and go down different pathways," Ms Camilleri said.
The Bathurst High students who attended the Women in Aviation event certainly came away with a different view of aviation.
Year 10 student Taylah Wade wanted to participate in the event to keep her options open for future careers.
The event was eye-opening, particularly in regards to recruitment.
"The statistics are very surprising as to how many kids don't think about the Air Force as an option," Miss Wade said.
Year 12 students Lucinda Begg and Taylah Muller appreciated how the event aimed to empower women and showcase the different career options available.
"It's been very inspiring to hear from all of the guest speakers about their career paths and how it wasn't always super linear, in that you go down so many twists and turns in life, but if you keep determined you then you'll achieve what you would like to," Miss Begg said.
The visit to Bathurst Aerodrome was a joint effort between Bathurst High, PanAir and Central West Flying School. It was initiated by the school and fully welcomed by aviation staff.