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‘It was powerful.’ U.S. Marine Corps lands helicopter on South Lawn

The MV-22B Osprey lands during the Engineering Takes Flight event on Thursday, Sept. 14, 2023, at the South Lawn in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Samuel Colmar | Staff

The U.S. Marine Corps landed a combat helicopter on the University of Kentucky’s South Lawn as part of the Engineering Takes Flight event on Thursday, Sept. 14. 

The event, which was free and open to the public, was organized by John Roberts, the director of the Engineering Living Learning Program. One of the purposes of the event was to help engineering students “get plugged into different engineering fields and opportunities,” Roberts said.

Engineering Takes Flight featured aerospace engineering. 

According to the engineering college’s website, UK is the only university in the state to offer an undergraduate aerospace engineering degree.

As a large-scale display of the capabilities of aerospace engineering, the helicopter landed by the U.S. Marine Corps was a MV-22B Osprey combat helicopter, an assault support vehicle capable of lifting 12,500 pounds of external weight, according to a video posted on the event’s website.

The Osprey flew in and landed as Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Fortunate Son” played over the speakers. Blades of grass, leaves and other natural debris got blown into the hair and faces of the crowd by the sheer force of the helicopter’s propellers.

Students recorded the landing of the helicopter, safely stationed a considerable distance away from the landing site.

“It was powerful, you could really feel the propellers, the wind from it hitting you,” Will Monroe, a civil engineering major said. “I’ve always been interested in big, heavy machinery, so I was really interested to see it.” 

Harlow Kernan, a sophomore environmental science major, heard about the event from the Veterans Resource Center.

“It was so cool, that’s the first one I’ve seen landing. I could feel the wind from back there,” Kernan said.

After the helicopter landed on the South Lawn, attendees formed a line to see the interior of the aircraft, with members of the U.S. Marine Corps there to answer questions and discuss possible career paths.

Engineering Takes Flight also featured an involvement fair with other student organizations focused on engineering.

“It’s a cool, more hands-on opportunity for our students to learn a little bit more about aerospace engineering,” Roberts said.

The event drew in crowds from multiple kinds of majors, some with a pre-existing interest in planes and helicopters.

“I’ve always loved planes and aviation,” Kernan said. “When I heard they’d be landing this on campus, I was like ‘I have to go.’”

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  • T

    TinaSep 18, 2023 at 4:57 pm

    Shame on the University for putting on this event. We need to STOP accepting funding from the DoD damaging the entire planet and killing people. Get ROTC and the DoD out of UK and stop hosting events like this promoting murderers

  • A

    anesiahSep 15, 2023 at 6:16 pm

    This is literally so cool and the journalist obviously put a lot of effort into it. Finally some good, precise content from the media!