Gradcracker's Prize Draw winner takes flight with Leonardo

Added: Over a year ago by Leonardo

The winner of the Gradcracker national competition got to experience the thrill of flying a Leonardo helicopter when they took the controls in the company’s ultra-realistic flight simulator, as part of their prize of a tour of the Yeovil site.

With over 200 early career opportunities available at its sites across the UK, Leonardo was keen to share with those interested in both engineering and business roles the type of projects those applying could ultimately end up working on. The competition with Gradcracker offered the chance for the prize winner to visit one of Leonardo's most impressive sites based at Yeovil, which first opened in 1915 and now produces some of the most advanced rotary aircraft in the world.

The winner Chloe Hodgson currently studies Aerospace Engineering at The University of Bristol, and won the competition out of 300 other students who entered the prize draw. After getting the chance to pose questions to the Recruitment Team and graduates who are currently on the company’s engineering graduate scheme, Chloe and her guests (fellow students Kate Goldup and Harry Clarke) were given a tour of Yeovil's stunning Helicopters Build Line before experiencing a helicopter flight simulation.

Left: Kate Goldup, middle: Chloe Hodgson (competition winner), right: Harry Clarke.

Speaking after the visit, Chloe said: “All three of us really enjoyed our visit to Leonardo! My personal highlight was the tour of the build floor as it was extremely interesting to hear from someone with so much experience and see how the theory we learn in university is put into practice on the actual helicopter designs -  seeing the helicopter used in the film ‘Skyfall’ was an extra bonus! The simulators were of course another fun section of the day while the talks from Graduates and Apprentices gave a valuable insight at this stage of our careers! It was particularly interesting to hear about the amazing charity work taking place on site! 
We'd like to say a big thank you to everyone who took the time to speak to us.

Yeovil HR & Organisation team member Emily Walton said: "Our flight simulator is designed to give passengers a real sense that they are airborne, with all the sights, sounds and sensations that you might expect in a real flight. Chloe and her friends seemed to love the whole experience and earlier on you could see their jaws drop when they saw our helicopter production line. Those of us working here all quickly get used to it as we see it every day, so it was good to see it from a fresh perspective through their eyes. It was a delight to see their enthusiastic response and reminded me again that it is pretty cool what we produce here – it is not everyone who can say that they work on helicopters that have featured in Bond films and even the Olympics Opening Ceremony!!!

Deborah Soley, UK Resourcing added: "Part of our job as recruiters is to open up the world of engineering and show students how their engineering skills could make a contribution to the technology driven world in which we live, such as the aircraft produced at Yeovil. Engineering is exciting and plays a powerful role in the real world, so their experience of our business will hopefully inspire them to consider a long term career with Leonardo in the future."