Aerospace graduate flying high at Civil Aviation Authority

1st November 2023

A former Aerospace Engineering student from Solihull College & University Centre has become an Airworthiness Surveyor at the Civil Aviation Authority based at Gatwick Airport – just 5 years after working part-time in a charity shop.

Since being awarded a first-class honours in his Aircraft Maintenance Engineering degree at the College’s Woodlands Campus (in partnership with Coventry University), Joe Hadley has been awarded a scholarship to train as a qualified flying instructor, worked on a graduate scheme at the Light Aircraft Association and now finds himself travelling around the UK helping with design, production, and modifications on planes as well helping to shape policy decisions.

Joe piloting his plane
Joe piloting his plane

Joe comments: “My time at Woodlands Campus was great. We had a small cohort, and our tutor Salman was so knowledgeable about the industry. He would share his experience which was invaluable. The hands-on approach worked well for me and gave me the confidence to take on an excellent job with the CAA. I feel as though I have come a long way since I worked in a charity shop while studying!”

Other students have progressed to work at British Airways, Boeing and Marshall Aerospace. Course leader, Salman Javed, is delighted his students are succeeding. He comments: “It’s not just the exceptional facilities at Woodlands Campus that make the difference, but the dedication and expertise of our teaching staff. Our students receive unparalleled hands-on training, and it’s heartening to witness their achievements. With resources like a flight simulator and an actual aircraft for practical experience, it’s no wonder our students pave the way to illustrious careers.”

pic of plane at Woodlands
The plane at Woodlands campus

The College is proud to lead the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Institute of Technology – a collaborative approach between further education colleges, universities and employers specialising in delivering higher technical education with a focus on STEM. The IoT provides employers with a skilled workforce and students with a clear route to technical employment.

Find out more about the College's Aerospace Engineering courses: Aerospace Engineering