Stability, opportunities for job growth or salaries 85% higher than the Spanish average are some of the attractions that make the defense industry a magnet for qualified talent. From university engineers to Professional Training profiles, the sector is attracting more and more interest due to its employability and the working conditions it offers, without forgetting the innovative component that characterizes it, since companies are investing 10 , 3% of their turnover in R&D.

As the employers’ association Tedae points out, it is an industry which, between direct and indirect, generates more than 105,000 quality jobs, in which “in addition to engineering, which is the essence of our companies, the role of professional training also stands out, in particular Dual, which must integrate training plans and programs that evolve continuously and in parallel to the way the technological needs of the sector, immediately integrating new technologies throughout the production process. An essential update to provide manpower for a constantly evolving industry, whose commitment to innovation is one of the aspects most appreciated by those who work in it.

Pelayo Menendezgraduate in aerospace engineering and holder of a master’s degree in aeronautical engineering, joined Indra in July 2021 as head of technology management in the Future Air Combat System project (known as NGWS/FCAS, for its acronym in English ), a position that he considers very rewarding because it allows him to work on a daily basis with experts from many different fields of engineering and even with professionals from other fields.

“My role involves both technical and management aspects, which gives me a feeling of great responsibility, but at the same time it is a very good opportunity,” he says. Likewise, he highlights as positive the numerous trips he makes and during which he interacts with teams from other countries. In fact, Menéndez takes care of this newspaper before flying to Paris to attend a meeting with French and German colleagues.

Pelayo Menéndez has been working at Indra since July 2021

GUILLERMO NAVARRO

For students or recent graduates who are hesitant about starting their career in the defense industry, he encourages them to do so for several reasons. “It’s a booming sector in which we can develop a lot in a short time thanks to the current dynamism of defense projects,” he says. Furthermore, he believes that “young people can bring new ideas that have great importance in long-term projects that are precisely looking for new proposals.”

Jesus Laforgue Roa He didn’t even need to finish his studies in software engineering, which he studies at the Polytechnic University of Madrid, to find a job. He joined Tecnobit-Grupo Oesía through an internship and was later hired full-time. “Defense was not part of my future plans because I didn’t know there was so much work,” admits this twenty-year-old, very satisfied with his current position, because it opened his eyes on a world that until then was more unknown to him. “I enjoy it and I will try to concentrate on this sector in the years to come. Young people think these are very cold professions, but no. They are beautiful works and if they could try them, it would help them because as long as you don’t do them, you don’t understand everything that’s behind them,” he explains.

In his case, he is dedicated to simulation, which helps soldiers train more efficiently and with less risk and reduces costs for armies. “One of the simulators is for another country, so I had to travel a lot throughout my tenure with the company, talking with the client to tailor it to what they were looking for,” he explains . The assessment of his professional experience is favorable: “Beyond the economic question, growing or progressing is a very grateful sector”.

Before obtaining his degree in software engineering, Jesus Laforgue Roa already worked at Tecnobit-Grupo Oesía, where he focused on simulation issues.

OF SAINT BERNARD

When asked what excites him most about his daily work, he doesn’t hesitate: creativity. “Both in IT and in defense, it is not a question of always reproducing the same thing, but of creating things and taking them where we want. It’s something that has always caught my attention and the defense has allowed me to do that. Using current technologies that we have lived with since we were little, especially for a young profile like mine, is something very interesting,” he admits. At 25, the journey has only just begun.

Tedae emphasizes that it is important that the industry generates vocations willing to participate in the development of technologies that will improve people’s lives in the future. “Technological developments that occur in the field of defense can often be transferred to other areas of the economy,” they add, “and this is achieved by individuals and companies through their talent.”

Leticia Monasterio He studied telecommunications engineering, completed a master’s degree and then obtained a doctorate from the University of Alcalá de Henares with a thesis focused on artificial intelligence in the field of medical images. Her initial goal when she enrolled in the doctoral program was to secure a place at university to continue being connected to academia, but as her research progressed, she realized how important the transfer of this knowledge into real life could be satisfactory. “As I progressed, I discovered that what I really enjoyed was taking it to private companies and seeing how it could be applied, without leaving aside the research, since at Thales I am in the R&D part,” he says. She signed for the multinational last April and her position is that of new technologies and innovation engineer in EDF (European Defense Fund) projects.

Leticia Monasterio works as an engineer in new technologies and innovation at Thales, in European Defense Fund (EDF) projects.

BELEN DIAZ

From his experience in the defense industry, to which he wishes to remain linked in the future, he emphasizes above all that “this is an area where there are a lot of advances that go hand in hand with engineering”. Specifically regarding his professional performance, he appreciates the climate of cooperation in which it moves. “I’m learning to work with consortia and other companies, sharing in meetings the achievements we’ve had over the months… it’s a part that I love and that I didn’t have to university”, explains Monasterio, who considers that this industry is sometimes largely unknown. “You don’t know everything that’s behind it until you’re in a defense company,” she comments along these lines, and concludes her interview with ABC by reflecting on the need to attract more female talents in this sector.

Almudena Martinez Alvarez He trained up to the BUP then studied the assembly of aeronautical structures and electricity. “Since I was little, I have always been attracted to this field,” she admits. A dream come true. At Airbus, the company where he works, he is dedicated to assembly and electrical installations in the avionics bay and cabin area as well as equipment assembly.

Almudena Martínez Álvarez joins Airbus after studying aeronautical structure assembly and electricity

AIRBUS

“It’s impressive to work directly on an airplane. The aircraft is delivered in civilian configuration, with all seats, panels and more installed. The first thing we work on is the “total” dismantling of it. It’s incredible to start working on a “naked” plane, because that’s when you realize the greatness of these planes. You see all the controls, regulations and quality that planes are subject to. Everything you work on takes on superlative importance. You work on an airplane and you enjoy it immensely,” he highlights as the highlights of his job with the company.