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RAF education initiative takes off at Lincoln UTC

RAF Education Initiative

Lincoln UTC was chosen as the venue for the launch of the RAF’s Vigilant 1440, a new interactive, educational exercise.

Designed to highlight the service’s need for engineers, Vigilant 1440 is inspired by the RAF’s Quick Reaction Alert Typhoon squadrons, which are maintained around the clock ready to intercept any unidentified airborne threat entering UK airspace.

The challenge faced by 60 Year 10 students as part of Vigilant 1440 was to control four Typhoon jets via their virtual hangers installed on tablets. Working in small teams, students had individual roles to perform, all requiring mathematics, physics and engineering knowledge as well as communication and teamwork skills.

The challenge ended with the students undertaking an overseas humanitarian mission. Following the successful completion of Vigilant 1440 launch at Lincoln UTC, the RAF intend to roll out the initiative to other UTCs in the UK.

John Morrison, Principal at Lincoln UTC, said:

The RAF is one of our Gold partners and regularly come into school to deliver presentations and educational programmes. In the past our students have enjoyed work experience with the RAF and just last month, we were delighted to see one pupil achieve the GCSE results he needed to secure an apprenticeship with the service. We feel very privileged that the RAF chose to launch this national initiative at Lincoln UTC.

RAF Squadron Leader Pieter Severein, who led the delivery of Vigilant 1440, said:

The programme has tested the students. They’ve had to work under pressure, taking on individual roles and working as part of a team. We’ve been delighted with the students’ response to the challenge and hopefully we will see some of these Lincoln UTC students applying to join the RAF in the future.

Sophie Hudson, age 14 from Lincoln UTC who undertook the role of Chief Engineering Technician in team Shellfish, said the exercise brought a career in the RAF to life:

I really enjoyed taking part in Vigilant 1440. I have a real interest in the forces as my dad is in the RAF. It was unlike anything I’ve done before at school and something I’d probably only be able to do at Lincoln UTC. I will certainly think about the RAF as a career in the future now as it has given me a better understanding of the possible careers available.

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