A Merimbula pilot is looking to tackle stereotypes and bridge the knowledge gap between pilots and aircraft maintenance.
Laura Koerbin has is expecting around 30 female pilots to descend on Merimbula airport on December 3 for a crash course in aircraft maintenance.
Despite growing up in the hanger with her father, Rex Koerbin, the director of Merimbula Aircraft Maintenance – and helping to steer planes before she could reach the peddles – Laura was definitely not encouraged to become a pilot.
“I tried to keep her out of it,” Rex said.
But even after going to university, Laura couldn’t shake her desire to fly. So three years ago she started lessons and she hasn’t looked back since, despite constantly fighting against entrenched prejudices.
“Being a female in a male dominated industry, like aviation where only around five per cent of the world’s pilots are women, means there are a lot of stereotypes to break,” Laura said.
Even recently, Laura has had comments from people saying things like “I hope you don’t fly over my house”.
“There’s just this stereotype that women don’t fly or women don’t do maintenance and it is a stereotype we want to help break, and what better way then inviting a bunch of female pilots to Merimbula to learn about aircraft maintenance?”
Rex Koerbin will be running the information sessions on Saturday, December 3, which will be aimed at teaching the women the basics of aircraft maintenance such as engine oil and oil filter changes, wheels and brake maintenance, spark plug changes and daily engine and air frame inspection tips.
Then on Sunday, December 4, the Frogs Hollow Flyers Club going to host a barbecue and fly-in as a way to showcase the Sapphire Coast before they leave.
Laura is also inviting any local women or girls who may be interested in the aviation industry attend the event, even if they only pop in for a quick chat.
“It would be awesome to get some young girls here because they are the future of aviation,” she said.
Anyone interested in attending the Australian Women Pilots Association event please email email@example.com.
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