Alesha Martin attends School to Skies Aviation & Technician course at Woodbourne Air Force Base by Submitted

School to Skies

Year 13 student Alesha Martin recalls her week spent at the RNZAF Base Woodbourne on the School to Skies Aviation & Technician course

Kia Ora

The first week of the school holidays was the best week of my life. I was fortunate enough to be a part of the School to Skies Aviation and Technician course at Woodbourne Air Force Base. The course was designed to introduce 40 Year 13 girls from across the country, to what life in the RNZAF entails. It was insightful and inspirational, and has solidified my passion for joining the Air Force. 

Over the week, we learnt about how engines and propellers work, principles of flight, resilience, personalities, and believing in yourself. All the while, having a hands on experience with aircraft maintenance, wielding, mechanics, hydraulics, avionics and flying. The best part of the course happened on day 5, when everyone went up in the C-130 Hercules. It was an experience of a lifetime, flying in an incredible aircraft, especially when they lowered the ramp at 1000ft, giving us the chance to experience and feel the world in a breathtaking way. The excitement built, when we each went up in the cockpit, and were able to see the world from a RNZAF Pilots eyes. 

Alesha in the cockpit of a RNZAF C-130 Hercules — Submitted

School to Skies gave me an unforgettable week, where myself and everyone involved grew as individuals, as well as seeing how our passions for aviation can be harnessed and used across the world in creating peace and prosperity for all. Hearing the Governor General and Minister of Defence speak of the hardships and doubt that they experience every day, and how it has moulded them into the people they are was an inspiration to us all. They taught us that if you want something badly enough, you can achieve it. Be true to yourself and the others around you, be a comrade and a leader, and you will achieve anything that you set your mind to.