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Trust Helps Students Think Even Bigger!

Published: 22 Jan 2018

Having put their mental and physical capabilities to the test on the frozen tundra of the Swedish wilderness last summer, Bristol University Air Squadron (BUAS) is preparing an even more challenging expedition later this year, thanks to the RAF Charitable Trust.

Last August saw a team of 12 BUAS students embark on Expedition Deep North, which was funded largely thanks to a £10,000 Trust grant, the runner-up prize offered as part of the Paul Bowen Scholarship Awards. 

This, and the top award of £15,000, is competed for annually by University Air Squadrons who are encouraged to think bigger and better when planning adventurous training or leadership development expeditions.

As 2016 runners-up, Bristol UAS (comprising students from Bristol, Bath and Exeter universities) was granted £10,000 towards delivering the student-planned walking and canoeing trek in the deep north of Sweden.

BUAS Acting Pilot Officer Adrian Langford said the terrain, weather conditions and exhausting nature of the activities proved both a mental and physical challenge. He added: "Even with the students' best efforts to plan a flawless expedition, the team learnt it was sometimes necessary to adapt and make difficult decisions to ensure every individual finishes."

Now, having scooped the Paul Bowen Scholarship Awards' top prize of £15,000 last year, Bristol UAS is planning its most ambitious expedition - to Northern Peru. Exercise Hypoxian Dreams will see a team of 12 students take on the fearsome Huayhuash and Santa Cruz Ulta treks, scale the face of the Llaca Glacier and climb Mount Pisco. 

Adrian said: "The Paul Bowen Scholarships have enabled members of BUAS to challenge themselves individually and as a team in ways that would otherwise not have been possible. Thanks to the Trust we've been able to be creative and ambitious in our planning and we're looking forward to applying the lessons learned in Sweden to ensure we make the most of all the opportunities presented by Ex Hypoxian Dreams."

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