CONTACT: Jason Marchant, 12, from Empire Vale Public School shows Howard Hughes, the maker of the plane, that he’s keen to take off.
CONTACT: Jason Marchant, 12, from Empire Vale Public School shows Howard Hughes, the maker of the plane, that he’s keen to take off. Mireille Merlet-Shaw

Giving students wings

EMPIRE Vale Public School students enjoyed an interesting look into the world of transport when they had an extraordinary tour through Hughes Engineering with owner Howard Hughes on Tuesday.

The students, from Years 4, 5 and 6 have been working on transport at school, and were excited to climb into the pilot's seat of some of the eight light planes Mr Hughes has at his Ballina workshop - for a standstill observation, nonetheless.

Mr Hughes said it was great to see the young kids getting so interested in his aircraft.

"The average age of our aero club is about 70, so what we need is a few younger people in the club. We need to address that burning issue," he said.

Teacher Karen Rantissi said that recently the class, as part of the unit of study, had a project to design a futuristic transport device - sea, land or air.

Mrs Rantissi said they'd seen everything from solar-powered cars to use of magnetic force to jet packs, "We've explored lots of scientific strategies."

She said the unit of study was enjoyed by the students as it was "very hands on" and creative.

"Today is the finale to our unit of study, looking at local transport in action."

Jason Marchant, 12, a plane enthusiast was one student who was very excited to be on the excursion.

He said he loved planes, and couldn't get over how they manage to travel suspended in the air.

He said he'd love to get more into the aero industry in the future, maybe even going on to design his own plane one day.



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