I must start with an apology that due to the current restrictions on gatherings we are not able to host a face to face AGM this year. I recognise too that the COVID-19 situation has also impacted our events programme over the last few months. We are however, planning to host our first virtual lecture event in the next few weeks so please keep a look out for that.
Despite the difficulties in recent months, I would like to thank our members for their support of the society and our events.
I would also like to take the opportunity to say thank you to our committee. They have generously committed their time and energy in support of our work and have again delivered an entertaining and educational series of events and lectures for our members.
I would like to say a special thank you to two of our committee members - SS Lam from HAESL and Patrick Li from Air Hong Kong - who are stepping down from the committee this year. Their many years of support and dedication to the Society are much appreciated.
Whilst we had a shortened events programme over the past 12 months, we covered a wide range of interests.
We began with a visit to the Government Flying Service where 40 members received a lecture on the Role and Training of a GFS helicopter winchman, were given the opportunity to tour the facility and see at first hand the new H175 helicopter. A lucky few were also able to try out the winchman training platform.
We continued with our two annual Careers Tours for Education Bureau School Teachers to help them understand the jobs available for school leavers in the aviation industry in Hong Kong, introducing them to a broad range of career opportunities that go beyond the more obvious roles in engineering or as pilots.
In September we had Bill Cusato from Boeing, provide a fascinating lecture during which he shared his experience of being involved in air accident investigations and the key lessons that he learned.
In December, Frosti Lau, from Cathay Pacific cargo gave a lecture on the air cargo industry, covering Hong Kong’s vital role in this dynamic global business sector together with some of the recent innovations and challenges in cargo carriage. The lecture was followed by a visit to the Cathay Pacific Cargo Terminal at Hong Kong International Airport.
I’d like to pass on my thanks to those involved in organising and supporting these events, together with lecturers that have kindly shared their time with our members.
In addition to sharing what we have done during the year, I would also like to take this opportunity to reiterate why we run these events and lectures.
The Society is here to promote and advance the aerospace industry. We want to raise awareness, showcase Hong Kong’s diverse and vibrant aviation industry and make it accessible. We want to share knowledge and experience, promote the highest professional standards and demonstrate the vigilance, discipline and attention to detail required to keep this industry, and those we serve, safe and reassured.
Most importantly we want to engage people. Our events and lectures are more than merely providing information – they help brings our industry to life. The people presenting at our society’s events come to show their enthusiasm for what they do and why it matters to them so much. Ultimately, we are here as a society to celebrate a shared interest and passion for aviation, and to show how combining that passion with technology can achieve something great in the world of aviation and aeronautics.
At the time of writing we have 453 active members, comprising 323 full members and 130 student members. Whilst this is a good number for our society, it is a little down on last year and lower than we have targeted. It will be our objective for the coming year to increase our membership further and I hope that once we are able to return to a more comprehensive series of events this will boost our numbers further.
In closing thank you again for your support this year. It is clearly a challenging time for aviation - both globally and in Hong Kong- but we remain committed to providing our membership with another good selection of events and lectures in the year ahead. We will ensure that the coming year’s programme complies with all the applicable requirements and best practices to keep you safe and healthy.
It is about time to flash back to what we had for last year. It might not be a very fruitful year to young member section due to pandemic of COVID-19, but we definitely are seeing the enthusiasm and dedication from our young members.
It is nothing better than having our flagship event: Aviation Quiz, when Christmas is around the corner. It was oversubscribed in few days as usual and we tried very hard to squeeze two more teams joining us. It was a great evening of tough questions, networking, friendships and good food. We were very happy to see our young members making new friends via this event and sharing their dreams in aviation.
AeroChallenge was cancelled due to COVID-19 this year.
To make our members engaged again, we might come up with some events that can be done online. Stay tuned and we look forward to meeting you soon.
Stay safe and healthy.