It was in 2009 that the Boeing Global Citizenship team launched ‘Soaring with Your Dream’, a new technology and engineering-oriented school program that sought to encourage a new generation of aviation pioneers to explore the wonders of flight.
Fast-forward more than a decade, and the program continues to excite the passion of thousands of schoolchildren across China and fulfil Boeing’s desire to inspire the imagination and creativity of the aviation industry’s future talent.
It was with similar themes of imagination and creativity in mind that they recently sought the support of long-term partner, AkzoNobel, for a new project to promote the initiative using a Boeing 737-700 as the canvas for a bespoke livery.
The airplane, which resides at the Boeing 737 Completion Center in Zhoushan, is used specifically to train current and future students in the art of painting airplane liveries and one-off designs. The launch of a ‘Flying Dream’ painted airplane is intended both as a celebration of Boeing’s commitment to Global Citizenship, but also as a practical demonstration of what world-class partnerships can achieve.
AkzoNobel donated both product and expertise to the project: its Aerodur 3001/3002 base coat/clear coat system is bringing the design to life while local teams from AkzoNobel supported in the mixing and application of the four colors chosen by the designers and based on existing AkzoNobel formulas. The process was filmed in its entirety from initial design through to final completion as a way of explaining to young people the level of detail and technical skills required.
The dominant color within the design is blue, to represent dreams and the boundless sky with its limitless horizons for young minds to explore. Towards the rear of the airplane, the design includes small silhouettes of Boeing creations, past and present, from the C-type seaplane designed by Wang Zhu, Boeing’s first ever aeronautical engineer, to the Boeing 747-8 with which Chinese manufacturers were closely involved. It also includes an image of the latest Boeing 787 Dreamliner to represent and reflect the main thought and mission of carrying the hopes and dreams of a future generation. On the wings and main fuselage, the design integrates a new logo – the Flying Dream – to unite the education program under a single thought.
Sherry Carbary, President of Boeing China, is proud of Boeing’s ongoing support for the program: “In China for nearly 50 years, Boeing has actively fulfilled its firm commitment to Chinese society and expanded and deepened its cooperation with the Chinese aviation industry. We are not only providing the industry with high-quality airplane products, but also fulfilling our social responsibility as an excellent corporate citizen.”
The impact of the ‘Flying Dream’ program has already been widely felt. It has been promoted to more than 1,600 schools in more than 20 provinces, municipalities, and autonomous regions across the country, including many in the more difficult to reach rural communities. To date, the program has inspired some 130,000 students to dream about the art of what’s possible.
Jeffery Li, AkzoNobel Sales Manager in China, adds: " AkzoNobel is very proud to support Boeing China with this initiative to help young people understand the detailed process of aircraft spraying to completion. We hope it will continue to inspire enthusiasm for the aviation industry in the future."