Now in its tenth year, the Silverwing Ambassador Program runs annually from February to June. It provides Manitoba high school students with an opportunity to volunteer while learning about operations at Winnipeg Richardson International Airport; all while providing useful customer service to visitors.
Always growing and gaining popularity, this year’s program includes 16 eager students from Collège Sturgeon Heights Collegiate, Tec Voc High School, Maples Collegiate, University of Winnipeg Collegiate, Miles Macdonell Collegiate, and West Kildonan Collegiate. These student ambassadors have a keen interest in the airport and are all enrolled in aviation, aerospace or tourism courses at their schools.
The Silverwing Ambassador Program was initiated by Winnipeg Airports Authority in 2006 to give Manitoba high school students an opportunity to learn about careers in the field of aviation and become familiar with the inner-workings of the airport. The program also allows students to develop their interpersonal and communication skills by assisting travellers, which is a great asset to customer service delivery at the airport.
The Silverwings bring a variety of skills to their ambassador roles. In addition to offering friendly assistance in English, many of them speak a secondary language. This year’s group speak French, Tagalog, Japanese, Portuguese and Armenian.
We hear from our ambassadors regularly about how much they enjoy their experience at the airport. In fact, two Silverwings from last season volunteered to stay on past the program end date and continue to serve visitors in the airport. Liam Hay, pictured to the right, has even been helping train the current group of ambassadors.
While participating in the Silverwing Ambassador Program, students earn a half credit toward their graduation requirements and are eligible to apply for The Queen Elizabeth II Aviation Scholarship awarded by Winnipeg Airports Authority. The Queen Elizabeth II Aviation Scholarship was initiated in 2010 in recognition of the Royal Tour by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II and His Royal Highness, the Duke of Edinburgh. This prestigious scholarship is awarded to a student who demonstrates leadership, citizenship and strong communication skills, and is also pursuing post-secondary education in the fields of aviation, aerospace, or tourism.
Being a Silverwing Ambassador benefits students in many ways. A number of our alumni have found jobs on the airport campus in their area of interest.
Next time you’re at the airport and in need of assistance, flag down one of our Silverwings. They’ll be happy to help!