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World-class aviation training precinct lands on Toowoomba’s doorstep

05 December 2014

Aviation students from all over the world will soon be able to complete their professional pilot training on the Darling Downs after Toowoomba’s Brisbane West Wellcamp Airport signed an exclusive agreement with the Airline Academy of Australia (the Academy).

The agreement includes collaboration with the University of Southern Queensland (USQ), which will provide aspiring international aviators undergraduate and post-graduate training in conjunction with the Academy’s practical programme.

The airport’s Wellcamp Aviation Education Precinct will provide professional pilot and aircraft maintenance engineering training and also permanently house light aircraft alongside a world-class team of experienced instructors.

Academy Director and Chief Commercial Officer Craig Duncan said the Academy had fulfilled the industry’s growing needs for more than 100 years, making it the longest-serving of its type in the Southern Hemisphere.

“Given our history in providing aviation employment pathways for students in regional areas, it was a natural progression to open a campus at Australia’s first public airport in almost 50 years – Brisbane West Wellcamp Airport,” Mr Duncan said.

The 2014 Boeing Pilot and Technician Outlook predicts that 533,000 new commercial airline pilots and 584,000 new maintenance technicians will be needed to fly and maintain the world’s fleet over the next 20 years, giving the Academy and the Wagner family the rare opportunity to work together to capitalise on a burgeoning industry.

Wagners’ chairman John Wagner said Queensland’s unrivalled standards in training, excellent weather patterns and favourable typography would be on show to the world.

“This agreement, which coincides with other lucrative opportunities we have in the pipeline due to Australia’s new free-trade agreement with China, will put Toowoomba and the Darling Downs on the map - both nationally and internationally,” Mr Wagner said. 

“We are extremely excited about the agreement, which we see as a major coup for the region that will generate significant revenue, employment opportunities and foster exciting new careers for people from all over the world,” he said.

Professor Jan Thomas Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Southern Queensland said that the opportunity to partner with the Academy would bring an exciting new dimension to the range of programs that USQ offered.

“While many associate aviation with pilot training there are a number of other careers from aircraft maintenance engineering, logistics, electronics, navigation and communication systems that USQ will consider offering in line with student demand and the needs of the region,” Professor Thomas said.

“With the Darling Downs poised to capture a new era in aviation history through the development of the Brisbane West Wellcamp Airport it’s only logical that USQ plays a pivotal role in the education of the next generation of aviation specialists.

“USQ’s commitment to its regional communities has seen the University become number one in Queensland for graduate employment and the new alliance with the Academy will only increase the employability of those entering these new professions,” she said.       

All media wishing to attend mustRVSP to Karen McKinley on 0416 121 777 by Thursday, December 04, in order to pre-arrange accreditation.

For further details contact:

Lisa Carter

Airline Academy of Australia

Media and Communications Advisor

Tel: 0447 755 893

 

Karen McKinley

Media and Communications Advisors

Wagners and Brisbane West Wellcamp Airport

Tel: 0416 121 777

 

Dr Aidan Burke

Director Corporate Communications

USQ

Tel: 0412 647 004

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