Mission Aviation Fellowship

Women needed for glider pilot study

Leinster Gliding Centre in Co Kildare ROI is currently recruiting women candidates to take part in a study on the experience of participating in learning to fly gliders in a typical gliding club environment.

The study is being run in partnership with the School of Nursing and Midwifery at Trinity College Dublin. The participants in the study will become members of the Leinster Gliding Centre for six months, with membership and the first 20 flights fully funded by Trinity College Dublin, engaging in the club’s activities, taking part in one-to-one interviews with a member of the Trinity research team, and completing short questionnaires that ask about mental well-being and quality of life, on joining and participating in the club activities and of learning to fly.

The gliding club’s management say that they currently have many candidates signed up for this initiative which is hoped will dramatically transform the gender balance in the club over the coming months.

Speaking on the announcement of the research project, Trevor McHugh, Chairman of Leinster Gliding Centre welcomed this new initiative and the many participants it will bring to the club. “When we first heard the Trinity College wished to carry out such a research project we were both honoured to be asked and delighted to cooperate with such an esteemed educational body.

“It is a central objective of the Gliding Centre to open up the sport of gliding to far greater numbers of women and do whatever we can to be more inclusive.

“The sport of gliding can be enjoyed by all, young and old, men and women while those who wish to compete in this sport can do so up to the highest international levels. Indeed, the timing couldn’t be better as the Womens’ World Gliding Championship is about to get underway in Spain this July so we really hope that Ireland can, in a future WWGC, field a team to participate at this level.”

Cecily Begley, Chief Flying Instructor at Leinster Gliding Centre added: “The research will take place over a six-month period. All participants will have their membership fees covered for the first six months together with their first 20 flights, all of which will be with a qualified instructor on board.

“This is a unique opportunity for women who wish to learn to fly, and to also contribute to a research study into women’s mental health and well-being. We, at the Gliding Centre, whole- heartedly embrace this opportunity to expand the number of women flying in Ireland.”

The gliding clubs adds that the research study is only just commencing and there are still opportunities to take part in this study and learn to fly. Any women that wish to participate should contact Dr Olivia Longe at [email protected] for further information on how to take part.

Image accredited to Leinster Gliding Centre

Author: FTN Editor

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