Boeing-backed STEM flight academy opens in Scotland
- Newton Flight Academy at Glasgow Science Centre is the first in the UK
- The Boeing-supported academy and its flight simulators will teach students about real-life aviation STEM challenges
- The opening marks another milestone in Boeing’s investment in Scotland
GLASGOW, March 29, 2022 - A pioneering flight academy – the first of its kind outside of Norway – has opened in Glasgow with the goal of inspiring the engineers and scientists of tomorrow.
The Boeing-supported Newton Flight Academy at Glasgow Science Centre will enable school students to tackle real-world science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) challenges through a permanent classroom and three state-of-the-art flight simulators.
The academy is the latest in a network of STEM-focused “Newton Rooms” around Europe. In 2018, Boeing invested more than £3.5 million to set up the network with its partner, First Scandinavia. The University of Strathclyde is a partner on the Glasgow Science Centre academy, which will also cover topics such as space, biofuels, advanced materials and manufacturing.
“It’s a credit to the work of the Glasgow Science Centre, Scotland’s expertise in aerospace and aviation manufacturing, and our world-leading institutions that this site was selected as the UK’s first Newton Flight Academy, and I am delighted to be here to help launch it today,” said First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who opened the academy and announced it to the public at the Boeing Innovation Forum in Glasgow in October 2021.
The opening builds on Boeing’s strong partnerships in Scotland. In 2020, Boeing and Scottish Enterprise created the Boeing Scotland Alliance, which explores opportunities to work together in Scotland, with the aim of doubling Boeing’s supply chain and creating 200 new quality jobs in five years. The alliance’s first initiative is a new £11.8 million R&D programme with the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland that is exploring novel manufacturing technologies for metallic components in a facility next to Glasgow Airport.
Nine Boeing P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft fly from RAF Lossiemouth in Moray, where they are housed in a Boeing-built facility, and where around 200 Boeing employees will be based working alongside the RAF on maintenance, training and support of the fleet. Boeing also has invested in Scottish startups through the first two cohorts of its UK-based accelerator.
“The Newton Flight Academy at Glasgow Science Centre is another sign of Boeing’s investment and growing presence in Scotland, which is made possible by such tremendous partners,” said Sir Martin Donnelly, president of Boeing Europe and managing director of Boeing in the UK and Ireland. “The academy will play a key role in inspiring the future engineers and scientists who will help bring about a more sustainable future in Scotland and beyond.”
Stephen Breslin, chief executive of Glasgow Science Centre, said: “Through the Newton Flight Academy, we hope to ignite a passion for science and technology, bringing young people together with industry and academia to create meaningful engagements that encourage them to explore their ambitions. We are thrilled to open the doors of the new state-of-the-art facility, and welcome our workforce of the future as they make their promise to our planet.”
Professor Sir Jim McDonald, Principal, University of Strathclyde, said: “Inventiveness is the key to engaging future generations and the Newton Flight Academy is an exceptional example of a project that is leading-edge, creative and hands-on. I am delighted that we can help bring ideas and technologies around sustainable aviation closer to our community of young learners by continuing to build on our partnerships with Glasgow Science Centre and Boeing.”
The first Newton Flight Academy opened in June 2016 in Bodø, Norway. Mobile Newton Rooms are also benefiting thousands of students across Europe, including in Spain, Germany and Poland, and in Ireland later this spring.
More on the Newton Flight Academy at Glasgow Science Centre: https://www.glasgowsciencecentre.org/discover/our-experiences/newton-flight-academy