Some 200 students and academics attended the first ever Airbus recruitment communication forum in Italy, which took place yesterday at the Politecnico di Torino and which also involved Milan and Pisa Universities. Airbus executives from major functions such as Engineering, Manufacturing and Customer Services, as well as Human Resources experts, from France, Germany, Spain and the UK, highlighted the Airbus latest innovations, shared their professional experience and discussed career opportunities at Airbus.

The Turin forum was part of a four-month roadshow organised by Airbus, together with the PEGASUS network, during which 15 leading universities in France, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, the UK and Italy, were visited. With its international recruiting strategy, Airbus is keen to attract the best graduates and motivate them for an international career.

"We have been very impressed with the quality of the people we met here in Turin, both on an academic and a human level, and are quite confident that concrete results will follow," says Karin Tegtmeier, Airbus Senior Manager Employment Marketing & Recruiting. "We are determined to further our partnership with Italian academic institutions and to strengthen their international orientation in order to provide graduates with a sound background for career opportunities in the aerospace sector. Already, 20 per cent of European aerospace engineers come from Italian universities, making it the second largest provider of aerospace engineers in Europe and highlighting the quality of Italian academics, students and courses."

The Pegasus network universities have all agreed on joint quality standards and those students who have achieved the "Pegasus Award" have completed five years study, spent upwards of five months of this time in another country and can work in at least two European languages. In addition, Airbus works with the universities to ensure that graduates also develop interdisciplinary project work, project management and inter-cultural open-mindedness. By supporting this network, Airbus hopes to ensure that each individual will bring much more than "just" a high level of technical expertise.

To enhance the international and industrial orientation, Airbus and PEGASUS have set up an internationaI internship programme. This programme is already providing up to 40 places for PEGASUS students across all Airbus sites, and will run alongside existing internship programmes at site level.

If Airbus has been able to accomplish so much just over 30 years of existence, it is largely thanks to the commitment and creativity of thousands of Airbus employees around the world, who together design, build, sell and support the most modern and comprehensive product line on the market. Airbus, which has the largest backlog in the civil aircraft industry, currently ranks high in the list of preferred employers in Europe.

Largely because of A380 development and manufacturing, Airbus will continue significant hiring in 2003, looking for some 1,500 people across its European sites with most opportunities arising in structure, systems, flight physics, cabin and manufacturing engineers. Applications are best handled online:

Headquartered in Toulouse, France, Airbus is a truly global enterprise of some 46,000 employees, with fully-fledged subsidiaries in the United States, China and Japan, spare parts centres in Hamburg, Frankfurt, Washington, Beijing and Singapore, training centres in Toulouse, Miami, and Beijing, and 120 field service offices around the world. Airbus also relies on industrial co-operation and partnerships with major companies all over the worlds, and a supplier network of some 1,500 suppliers in 30 countries. In Italy, Alenia is a participant in the Airbus A321, A340-500/-600 and A380 programmes.

Airbus is an EADS joint Company with BAE SYSTEMS.