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High-flying mothers bring daughters to work to inspire next generation of women in STEM

To celebrate Mother's Day, easyJet recently invited daughters to join their high-flying mothers at work in a bid to encourage the next generation of women into STEM careers.

The airline is committed to this message after recent research suggested that, based on current trends, it would take 22 years for the same number of women to be starting STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) apprenticeships as men.

First Officer Debbie Thomas, an airline pilot at easyJet and former engineer, was joined by her 10-year-old daughter Harriet for the special day and the pair explored the flight deck of an A320 easyJet aircraft. Harriet was shown the controls and even practised making a pilot's passenger announcement.

Keen to follow in her mother's footsteps, Harriet said of the day: "It was so fun to see my mum at her work, I think her job is amazing which is why I want to be a pilot just like her when I grow up."

Nikoletta Pakalidou, a physicist and senior data analyst for the airline, spent the day with her seven-year-old daughter Amaryllis. Together, they analysed baggage data and trends, met with colleagues across the business and attended meetings at the airline's head office in Luton.

Speaking of the importance of representation, Nikoletta said: "This was a brilliant and important opportunity to bring Amaryllis to work with me and show her what a job in Data is all about. With fewer women than men starting STEM apprenticeships in the last year and research even showing that that number is falling compared to previous years, it's critical to raise awareness of the incredible variety of jobs available in the industry and in those STEM roles from a young age."

The campaign is part of the airline's ongoing work to support employability and early career opportunities and to drive a more diverse community within the airline and the aviation industry as a whole.

It follows the recent launch of easyJet's partnership with leading diversity in aviation youth organisation Fantasy Wings to support young people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds, as well as young women, with greater career opportunities.

easyJet announced they will provide 50 schools across the U.K. with fully-sponsored places on Fantasy Wings' aviation career development programme, which aims to equip young people with the necessary tools they need to succeed in the industry and land their dream first-time role.

Since 2016, the airline's Pilot School Visits programme has seen pilots visit hundreds of schools up and down the country for young people to learn more about the career and encourage more girls to become airline pilots. Schools and parents can request a visit from an easyJet pilot by contacting pilotvisits@easyJet.com.