As part of the ever-growing initiative to encourage young women to pursue interests and careers in the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields, Envoy co-sponsored a Girls Soar Aviation Day event on Saturday, March 25. The event featured speeches from American Airlines employees and Envoy Captain Jessica Hines, building workshops and a tour of the American Airlines C.R. Smith aviation museum.
The event, a partnership between Envoy, American Airlines, Women in Aviation International and the C.R. Smith museum, saw dozens of young girls open up their inquisitive minds and try their hand at engineering working contraptions. During the speeches, the girls asked insightful, non-stop questions, and during the workshops, they worked diligently and with pride.
Advice from the experts
One of the day’s speakers, American Airlines Engineer Regina Stewart, shared her career journey and detailed her day-to-day goals as a female engineer. She spoke of her inspirations and gave advice to the group of girls on their own paths to a career.
A young girl asked Regina if she was ever scared at her job.
“Sure I was scared, because I had a lot of responsibility” said Regina. “But I began feeling comfortable once I got more experience and success.”
Lisa Oxentine, American Airlines Senior Manager of Customer Recovery, offered words of encouragement by sharing her life story of beginning her career as an airport agent and working her way up. She taught the girls that a positive attitude and maximum effort will result in high performance.
“The most important thing is to believe in yourself,” said Lisa. “Sure, you’ll face challenges but you can’t let that stop you from getting to your goals.”
Walking onto the stage to a huge round of applause, Envoy Captain Jessica Hines greeted the crowd of cheering girls. It became apparent who the girls were waiting for this entire time; a real-live pilot!
Captain Hines shared her career journey, the fun places she gets to visit and gave the girls the most necessary advice of the day.
“If you want to become a pilot and if you want to be successful in life, stay out of trouble, get good grades and be a safe driver,” said Jessica.
Make the dream work
The rest of the day consisted of STEM-related activities that had the girls putting on their thinking caps. One of the workshops challenged girls to use household materials to build a “plane painting machine” without looking at any plans.
Remarkably, the girls whipped up expertly engineered devices using straws, markers and empty paper rolls. Using teamwork and problem solving, the girls learned the importance of coming together to achieve a common goal.
Another workshop involved a bit of communication. Just like in the movies, the girls fashioned “telephones” out of cups and string – and it really worked!
Every girl had the opportunity to meet an airline pilot, learn from important women in the aviation industry and sharpen their critical-thinking skills all while having a blast! From the first moments of walking into the museum to the final letting loose and having fun, the Girls Soar Aviation Day event was an outstanding success.