Air Force Engineer Wins Top Aeronautical Prize
6 May 2015
The New Zealand Defence Force is pleased to congratulate Flying Officer (FGOFF) André Budel on winning the New Zealand Aeronautical Trust’s prestigious Ian Diamond Award. FGOFF Budel is an Engineering Officer at Base Auckland in Whenuapai.
FGOFF Budel, a former student of Rosmini College on the North Shore, joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force in 2008 as an Avionics Mechanic. He was later accepted into the Bachelor of Engineering under the Air Force’s University Officer Scheme; a career highlight for the young officer.
FGOFF Budel says winning the award is an honour and he will be putting the $4000 prize towards further professional studies in aerospace engineering.
“Receiving this award has motivated me to seek out more opportunities to learn and excel in engineering. I’ve put a lot of effort into my professional development and it is very rewarding to be a recipient of the Ian Diamond award,” says FGOFF Budel.
As an engineering officer FGOFF Budel supervises the day-to-day management of a team of avionics technicians who work on the Air Force’s fleet of P-3K2 Orion aircraft. These aircraft are the mainstay of New Zealand’s airborne surveillance and response force and are used to patrol and protect our Exclusive Economic Zone, the Pacific region and Southern Ocean, and conduct search and rescue missions.
“In 2010, I was an avionics mechanic working on the Orions and we deployed on a search and rescue mission to Rarotonga. This was a great experience as I was able to see how the work I do directly contributes to a tangible outcome, in this case we saved a person’s life,” says FGOFF Budel.
For more information please contact Defence Public Affairs 021 487 980
About the Ian Diamond Award
The award is made to a young aviation professional wishing to embark on a course of higher academic study leading to a degree in an aviation related subject and with the firm intention of participating in New Zealand aviation. The award consists of $4000 to use towards further professional study, a medal and a certificate.
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