At Aurora, we understand that fostering young minds and nurturing their interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is critical to the advancement of the aerospace industry. From space exploration to sustainable energy solutions to cutting-edge technology, STEM fields drive innovation to create a better tomorrow. This year, Aurora and our employees supported several student-focused, STEM-based events. Some of these events are highlighted below. 

The America Rocketry Challenge (ARC)

In May, employees based out of our Manassas, Virginia facility volunteered their time to support the America Rocketry Challenge (ARC). ARC, the world’s largest rocket contest, gives middle and high school students the opportunity to design, build, and launch model rockets and provides hands-on experience solving engineering problems. In addition to supporting the competition, Aurora hosted over 100 students and coaches at our headquarters to learn more about what we do and get an inside look at our facilities and experimental aircraft.

For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) High School Robotics Teams

The For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) high school robotics teams are teams of young engineers and innovators who will drive the future of technological advancement. Aurora engineers currently support 13 of teams in 5 states, offering mentorship and sharing their expertise to help each team excel in competitions. By doing so, we not only encourage innovation but also contribute to the development of critical problem-solving skills.

Robotics Education and Competition Foundation’s Aerial Drone Dragonfly Championship

Our support for the Robotics Education and Competition Foundation’s (REC) Aerial Drone Dragonfly Championship in West Virginia allows students to explore flight principles, programming, and engineering while promoting the understanding of STEM-related fields. This year, through our contribution to the Fairmont Foundation, Aurora supported five teams of underrepresented students with a goal to build diverse representation in the future STEM workforce. For this year’s Mission 2023: Blackout competition, teams built their own drones and had the opportunity to write their own code for the autonomous flight skills portion of the competition. Employees also volunteered their time to support the event and answer questions from students.

Virginia Tech Innovation Campus Drone Summer Camp

This summer, our Virginia facility hosted a local drone and aviation program sponsored and coordinated by the Virginia Tech Innovation Campus. The program provides hands-on experience and expert guidance, fostering a love for aviation and drone technology. The students participated in a hands-on drone demonstration, heard from Aurora leadership, toured our facility, and got a close-up look at some of our aircraft.

Carl Hopkins Youth Aviation Expo

In August, Aurora employees participated in the 3rd annual Carl Hopkins Youth Aviation Expo at The Bridge Sports Complex in Bridgeport, West Virginia. The goal of the annual event is to introduce West Virginia students to the growing aerospace industry in north central West Virginia and pique their interest in pursuing a career in the field. The expo offers students opportunities to learn about flight for basic airplanes, radio-controlled aircraft, drones, and rockets. Aurora has participated in the event every year since its inauguration, and several employees volunteered again this year. More than 400 youth and just under 300 adults attended.

MSU Advanced Composites Institute Camp

Composite materials are a crucial aspect of aerospace engineering and manufacturing. Mississippi State University’s Advanced Composites Institute (ACI) summer camp aims to provide students with a foundation in composite and additive manufacturing techniques. This summer, Aurora hosted a tour for Camp ACI at our Mississippi manufacturing facility. By offering insights into composites, we are working to inspire the next generation of aerospace engineers and manufacturing technicians who will contribute to making aircraft lighter, stronger, and more efficient.

Girls in Aviation Day

In September, our West Virginia facility partnered with Women in Aviation International and the Mid-Atlantic Aerospace Complex to host the second annual Girls in Aviation Day at the North Central West Virginia Airport. More than 100 girls and their families participated in the aviation fair where they had the opportunity to try their hand at flight simulators, fly drones, and participate in hands-on aviation-related activities. Aurora employees volunteered their time to help girls build a rubber band-powered helicopter and craft a keychain made of ‘propeller’ beads.

Through our involvement in these and many other STEM-based activities and events, we hope to inspire and educate young minds, paving the way for a brighter, more innovative future.


Aurora Flight Sciences, a Boeing Company, advances the future of flight by developing and applying innovations across aircraft configurations, autonomous systems, propulsion technologies, and manufacturing processes. With a passionate and agile team, Aurora delivers solutions to its customers’ toughest challenges while meeting high standards of safety and quality. Learn more at

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