COLLABORATION

Lockheed Martin partners with University of Newcastle to build the next generation of defence

SOURCE: Lockheed Martin
New ‘Altitude Accord’ initiative with University of Newcastle will support the sustainment of Australia’s F-35 fighters.

Defence specialists Lockheed Martin Australia have partnered with the University of Newcastle Australia and Regional Development Australia (RDA) Hunter to develop the region’s “future high-value skills” in the next generation defence specialists.

The “Altitude Accord,” as it is called, will include a number of initiatives aimed at meeting the skill requirements needed to operate, maintain and develop the advanced defence industry technologies that will be a part of Australia’s future defence capability.

“The ‘Altitude Accord’ initiative will focus on growing a local workforce to support the sustainment of Australia’s first squadron of highly advanced F-35 fighters and Australia’s largest regional economy, we understand the importance of the Hunter to our wider economic and national security interests,” said Lockheed Martin Australia Chief Executive, Vince Di Pietro.

RDA Hunter has been funded by Lockheed Martin to facilitate the programme, which will see an investment of more than AU$40,000 (US$28,500) go to the university over two years.

On offer are scholarships for 10 University of Newcastle first-year Aerospace Systems Engineering students to attend a fully funded Lockheed Martin education and research programme. This includes a tour of the facility’s state-of-the-art STELaRLab in Melbourne and Endeavour Centre in Canberra, and time to explore the RAAF base at Williamtown.

The university will also strengthen its relationship with the defence manufacturer through increased use of the STELaRLab.

To ensure the next generation of aerospace engineers are getting the knowledge they’ll need, the university will work with Lockheed Martin to update the curriculum design in line with the industry’s needs.

A series of guest lectures and seminars led by Lockheed Martin and industry experts are also planned.

“This partnership will facilitate productive collaborations between industry, research, education and government to create opportunities and attract investment to the region,” RDA Hunter’s Director of Regional Development and Executive Officer, Trevor John.

“Connecting LMA with the University of Newcastle via The Accord helps grow the skilled future workforce that will sustain economic growth in the Hunter [region].”