Aquila Air Traffic Management trainees

SCG is delighted to announce that the first cohort of Aquila Air Traffic Management Services students has completed their qualifications in Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

Shrewsbury Colleges Group is delighted to announce that the first cohort of Aquila Air Traffic Management Services students set for the Falkland Islands has completed their BTEC Level 3 qualification in Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

The four students, who will work for Aquila as maintenance engineers in support of the Ministry of Defence air traffic management and air defences in the Falkland Islands, completed the accelerated Level 3 programme in April.

The BTEC Level 3 in Electrical and Electronic Engineering would typically take students two years to complete studying under a ‘normal apprenticeship’. With the bespoke delivery approach adopted by the college, the students were able to complete the course in a concentrated way. It will allow Aquila to deploy the newly qualified engineers to the South Atlantic islands at the end of 2022 after the students undertake further specialist training.

This cohort is the first of two to undertake the bespoke programme at Shrewsbury Colleges Group this year. The second group of students, due to graduate in June, will also deploy to the Falklands next year. It is part of a long-term strategy to allow Aquila Air Traffic Management Services to deliver specific training in Shropshire at the Aquila’s Training Academy at RAF Shawbury to respond to worldwide requirements in this highly skilled vocation.

Andrew Lee, Director of Employer Engagement and Curriculum Leader for Engineering and Motor Vehicle at Shrewsbury Colleges Group, said: “This bespoke programme has been developed specifically to meet the job role and company needs. This is another example of how Shrewsbury Colleges Group is continuously adapting to meet the needs of employers and maintain the highest of standards of training.”

The newly qualified engineers will bolster Aquila’s technical presence in the Falkland Islands, which is currently supporting and upgrading air traffic control systems at RAF Mount Pleasant Airfield. The enhanced team will also support the remote radar heads around the islands, providing air defence on the British Overseas Territory.

The trainees have been recruited from the Falkland Islands and South Atlantic Islands as well as the UK.

Andrew Lee added: The students in the first two cohorts have been recruited from all over the world and from various backgrounds and have excelled under the pressures of a very demanding programme. We are proud to give these students the skills that they need to develop and progress within their chosen profession. They have all proven to be a credit to the company already in how they have developed and I’m sure will do exceptionally well in the future.”

Aquila’s Head of Training, Dave Riley, based at RAF Shawbury, also the home of the Defence School of Air and Space Operations said:

“The trainees have worked phenomenally hard to graduate from this challenging course. They have really impressed. We are incredibly grateful to our partners at Shrewsbury Colleges Group for adapting and accelerating the course for us. It means we can respond to UK Defence needs quickly and support our Armed Forces to provide safe and secure operations on the ground and in the skies.”

James Staniforth, Principal of Shrewsbury Colleges Group continued: ‘‘We are exceptionally proud to have been selected by Aquila Air Traffic Management Services to work with them on this exciting new project. It has been fantastic to see the students complete this accelerated programme. They are a dedicated group of students who have studied hard and showed great determination to complete the practical and academic elements of this course.’

News Archive