Ten female students from Wisconsin took part in the 2016 Girls in Aviation Day (GIAD) aimed at encouraging girls and young women to consider careers in the male-dominated aviation industry. Wisconsin was the only tertiary institution to take part in the event this year.

The event, on Saturday, 24th September, 2016, brought together female students from age eight and above to listen and interact with accomplished women in the aviation sector.

Participants toured the air force base and learned about the different types of aircraft and what they are used for. They also had access to air traffic control simulators and took part in a networking session with female pilots and other women and men involved in the aviation industry.

GIAD is an international event instituted by Women in Aviation International (WAI). Chairing the programme, Mrs. Juliet Aboagye Wiafe, the President of WAI Ghana Chapter, spoke on the theme: “Connect, Explore and Experience”.  

She said the WAI initiative was aimed at enabling girls to see exciting careers available to them as traffic controllers, marshallers, pilots, cabin attendants and engineers within the aviation community.

The programme was being held for the first time in Ghana, and was designed to give girls the opportunity to network with their female counterparts in aviation and explore careers in aviation and the aerospace industry.

Wisconsin student Brenda Ofosumehaa, said: “Before, I had the interest to be a flight attendant but it drew my attention to other options. I now wish to be a pilot. 

“I got to learn that anyone, regardless of what course they studied, can take some courses in the aviation school and pursue a career in aviation. 

The Level 400 Business Studies student praised the initiative and said more such programmes should be organised so that more females can get to know the kinds of things she learned.

Wisconsin is in talks with GCAA to establish an Aviation Club, which will inspire both female and male students at the university to join the industry.

By Asanatu Wun-Nam Andani, Level 200 Upper Communication Studies