In a heart-warming tale, 15-year-old Alex Ontimo, a sixth-grade student at Sevese Morea Primary School, experienced the realisation of his dream as he visited Air Niugini’s Engineering hangar in Port Moresby.
With an unwavering fascination for airplanes, Alex’s long-cherished dream of becoming an aircraft engineer gained momentum during this extraordinary visit. Guided by Air Niugini’s General Manager of Engineering, Mr. Ferdinand Almeda, Alex embarked on an unforgettable tour of ANG’s aircraft fleet, including the Dash 8, Q400, and Fokker 100.
The highlight of his visit was the opportunity to step onto the flight deck and sit in the captain’s seat, leaving him speechless with excitement.
Mr. Gary Seddon, the Acting Chief Executive Officer of Air Niugini, acknowledged the uniqueness of each child’s dream and the immense value of nurturing their passions. He expressed, “There is nothing more rewarding than supporting a child with passion and igniting that dream.”
Alex’s childhood interest in building things using his father’s carpentry tools, coupled with a captivating encounter he witnessed with young men working on a remarkable engine, further fuelled his ambition to become an aircraft engineer.
His mother shared her pride in his academic achievements and encouraged him to persist in his pursuit of excellence, underscoring the importance of maintaining good grades in order to reach his goal.
Hailing from a mixed parentage of New Ireland and Central Province, Alex’s visit to the hangar was made possible through the kindness of Air Niugini. As a national airline, Air Niugini continually supports the aspirations of young Papua New Guineans, whether in the field of aircraft engineering, piloting, accounting, or any other role within the airline industry.
By offering such opportunities and encouraging dedicated efforts, Air Niugini aims to empower the younger generation to thrive. With a model of a Boeing 767 aircraft presented to Alex during his visit, along with the chance to meet Captain Samiu Taufa, an Acting General Manager of Flight Operations, and a product of Air Niugini’s own Pilot Cadet scheme, Alex’s dream continues to soar.
As Mr. Seddon concluded, “We have opportunities available—all they need to do is study hard, get good grades, and apply.”