Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week 2020 Attracts Record Numbers of Women and Girls
76,000 girls of all ages attended 316 aviation outreach events organized to celebrate the 10th annual Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week, March 2-8
Launched 10 years ago to celebrate the March 8 anniversary of the world’s first female pilot licence obtained by Raymonde de Laroche in 1910, Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week (WOAW) is now widely celebrated across the globe.
During the Week’s 10th edition, March 2-8, 2020, 76,000 women and girls attended 316 aviation outreach events scattered across 49 countries on all continents to discover air and space careers, hands-on – a 30% year-over-year increase.
2020 also saw the highest level of engagement among industry stakeholders who used social media campaigns to raise awareness of women’s historical contributions to the air and space industry and highlight their female employees as visible role models.
Over 3,500 individuals invested nearly 50,000 volunteer hours to give women and girls in their communities the opportunity to visit aerospace facilities, try various non-traditional activities, connect with women working in the industry today, and just have fun.
Pilots did not hesitate to use their own funds to introduce more than 4,786 women and girls to the magic of flight on a small aircraft, free of charge. Many flight training schools offered at cost discovery flights to women and girls during the Week and prompted another 2,459 women and girls to take the plunge outside of official events.
“This experience was amazing for my young daughters and me. We are so lucky to have participated,” said Julie Wilkins who flew at Glacier Air in Squamish, Canada. She is now learning to fly to compete for the $10,000 Fly It Forward® scholarship offered by the Institute for Women Of Aviation Worldwide (iWOAW) and CAE awarded to the first eligible woman who flies solo.
Tusaş Engine Industries (TEI), a major aircraft engine manufacturer in Turkey, has seen its efforts to recruit and retain women improve significantly thanks to its annual participation. This year, TEI opened its factory doors to 110 young women and gave them the opportunity to see how aviation engines are manufactured from the receipt of raw materials to final product release. “Most women expressed that working in aviation industry was not on their minds until this tour, but that they would like to take part in the aviation industry in the future,” reports Can Doğu, TEI.
“10 years ago, there were no widespread gender-specific efforts to attract women and girls into the industry,” says Mireille Goyer, an airline-rated pilot and the founder of the Week. “Today, the Week has become the largest industry-wide effort to introduce women and girls to the industry’s opportunities.”
Perhaps more importantly, the award-winning methods serve as inspiration for many smaller association-based initiatives that have sprouted since.
“It is truly humbling to know that my little idea has made possible for so many women and girls to consider and enjoy rewarding careers in the air and space industry,” adds Goyer.
The Institute for Women Of Aviation Worldwide (iWOAW) is proud to name the winners of the 2020 Fly It Forward® Awards and prizes for groups, aviation enthusiasts, and the women and girls who discovered aviation..
“WOAW is so generous and makes it fun and easy!” said Robin Guillian, Director of Aviation, at the Vermont Technical College in the United States, one of the many participating schools.
Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week 2021 will take place across the world from March 8 to 14, 2021.