Department of Mechanical and Aerospace EngineeringNEWS & EVENTS
25 Apr 2017
Student-Led HKUST Aero Day Raises Interest in Aerospace Engineering and Fosters Links with Industries
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) organized Aero Day on 24 April on campus to introduce the present and future development of the aviation industry and the career opportunities offered in the field.

Jointly organized by the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) and the HKUST Student Branch of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), Aero Day attracted around 20 major companies and professional institutions in the aviation industry to deliver talks on a variety of topics and set up booths. They range from airlines, maintenance and repair organizations, original equipment manufacturers, to government agencies and professional organizations.

Aero Day kicked off with an opening ceremony where Dean of Engineering Prof Tim Kwang Ting Cheng and Head of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Prof Christopher Chao delivered welcoming remarks. This was followed by the award presentation of the Hong Kong SAR Government’s Hong Kong Aviation Scholarship Scheme where Ms Candy Nip, Principal Assistant Secretary for Transport and Housing (Transport), presented the scholarships to five engineering students. The scheme aims to encourage continuous professional enhancement for the aviation sector and provides scholarships to selected students to complete aviation-related degree or higher degree programs. The five awardees are all Year 1 engineering students who will begin their aerospace engineering major in Fall 2017.

Other than talks and booth exhibitions, Aero Day also featured unmanned aerial vehicle flight demonstrations, a display of model planes that were built by MAE students for past international competitions, and a keynote talk by Mr Steven Chan, Lead Engineer of The Boeing Company, on “10 Things to Achieving a Successful Career”.

Aero Day was first organized in 2015 and this is the second time it has been held. This year the number of participating organizations has increased by over 70% and the activities are more diversified. One key feature of Aero Day is that it is a student-led activity supported by the department. Committed to education innovation, the School of Engineering has been expanding experiential learning programs to promote active learning and enable students to effectively realize their potential.

The move into Aerospace Engineering has been a major initiative of the School of Engineering over the past few years. A lot of developments have been rolled out with substantial progress made, including the Department of Mechanical Engineering being renamed to the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering in 2013, new faculty in aeronautical engineering recruited, increased collaboration with the aviation industry on research, the launch of MSc in Aeronautical Engineering (2016), MSc in International Air Transport Operations Management (2016), a joint program with Ecole Nationale de l'Aviation Civile (ENAC) in France, BEng in Aerospace Engineering (2015), and the establishment of student groups including the Aeronautics Interest Group (2011) and the HKUST Student Branch of AIAA (2013). These student groups have participated in a number of international competitions, including the AIAA Design/Build/Fly Competition where in 2017 they ranked No.17 out of 95 teams (No.2 in Asia) in a 3-day fly-off event held in Tucson, Arizona. This is also the best-ever result of HKUST students in this competition.


Related Information

Opening Ceremony


Ms Candy Nip (2nd from left), Principal Assistant Secretary for Transport and Housing (Transport), presents scholarships of the Hong Kong Aviation Scholarship Scheme to five student awardees.

Head of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) Prof Christopher Chao (2nd from left), Assistant Professor of MAE Prof Larry Li (1st from left) and MAE student organizing committee

HKUST Aero Day 2017 attracted around 20 major companies and professional institutions in the aviation industry to deliver talks and set up booths.