Easington MP Grahame Morris is encouraging local schools and youth organisations to take advantage of the Sandy Gunn Aerospace Careers Programme (SGACP) which encourages and supports young people to pursue a career in engineering, aeronautics and astronautics.

To date the SGACP has worked with over 500 schools across all regions in the UK. The scheme is open to all 15- to 18-year-olds through their schools and youth groups.

The SGACP offers:

• Face to face presentations within schools to promote STEM (Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) careers and industry developments.
• Annual hands on engineering workshops where candidates learn basic aircraft manufacturing processes by making their own Spitfire parts.
• Continued student development via the unique SGACP network.

The service is free of charge so that financial challenges for young people are not a roadblock to careers information and professional progression.to encourages all young people

The Sandy Gunn Aerospace Careers Programme is a living memorial to the young men of the RAF Photo Reconnaissance Unit. The majority of men who flew AA810 Spitfire had an engineering background. For some, their engineering careers were halted permanently as they would never return from defending their country in World War Two.

The scheme is named after Flight Lieutenant Alastair “Sandy” Gunn who was studying to be a diesel engineer before he joined the RAF in 1940; he would never return to realise his career prospects.

Easington MP Grahame Morris is encouraging schools and youth groups to take advantage of the SGACP, he said:

“I was delighted to meet the team behind this fascinating and unique careers programme. This scheme is a living memorial and a lasting legacy to the men of the RAF Photo Reconnaissance Unit who gave their lives defending our country.

The aim to encourage and extend opportunity to young people in East Durham to pursue a careers in engineering and aerospace is a beautiful tribute to the men who were unable to pursue their career passions.

East Durham has numerous youth groups, cadet services and schools who can benefit from this scheme, and I hope they will help our young people with an interest in engineering to realise their ambitions.”

Speaking of the ACP Sandy’s nephew Alastair commented:

“Too many of the old skills are disappearing fast and some have already been lost forever. It is really important to me and to the industry that these skills are developed and kept alive for future generations and are not allowed to die.

My uncle gave up his career in engineering to join the R.A.F.V.R. and serve his country, I am extremely delighted that this program is named after him and that it will assist today’s young people with their education, an education that was cut so tragically short for Sandy.”

Schools and youth groups interested in the SGACP can find out more at www.SpitfireAA810.co.uk or by contacting David Robertson at david@spitfireaa810.co.uk

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