Alaska Airlines sought to inspire the next generation of aviation enthusiasts Saturday by hosting the ninth annual Aviation Day.
The free, all-day conference was held at Sea-Tac airport, where attendees were able to tour Alaska jets, visit the cockpit of a Boeing 737, and simulate flying a 737, inside of airline hangars and out on the tarmac.
Throughout the day, professionals discussed careers in aviation with 1,200 young visitors, explaining what it's like to be a pilot, engineer, mechanic, flight attendant, and dispatchers. While children may be exposed to these positions just from the experience of flying commercially, getting to see how things work behind-the-scenes was a great way to educate, inform, and inspire.
Higher education establishments were also present to discuss with attendees how they can help them achieve their aviation career goals. Among those present were the University of Washington College of Engineering, University of North Dakota School of Aerospace Sciences, and Central Washington University Department of Aviation.
The goal of Aviation Day is to encourage young people to pursue STEM careers and get them excited about the idea of working in aviation. From touring planes to testing robots, the day's activities allowed for kids to find the fun in flying.
The day also celebrated the 90 year anniversary of Charles Lindbergh's solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean on May 20, 1927. The Port of Seattle and Boeing also participated in hosting the event.
KING 5's Michelle Li was live at the event; watch her Facebook feed below for a behind-the-scenes look at Aviation Day 2017, including an interview with Captain Ron about the Michael Anderson Aerospace program, and a tour of a plane and commercial airline hangar.