Column piece: People's News Mackay

20 May 2022

Professor Pierre Viljoen
CQUniversity Associate Vice-President (North Queensland and Hinterland)

CQUniversity Chair in Automation and Future Skills

It has been quite a busy few weeks' not only at CQUniversity but also more broadly across the region' with a huge lineup of events taking place.

Earlier this month we saw 137 new graduates cross the stage for the 2022 graduation ceremony' held on Tuesday' 5 March 2022.

As always' I was really proud to see these future scientists' teachers' healthcare professionals and industry leaders take the first steps toward their future careers and join CQU's global alumni cohort in the workforce.

A personal highlight was seeing chiropractic student Declan Mulherin' the son of the late Tim Mulherin' receive his degree.

Mr Mulherin was an avid supporter of CQU during his time in government and thereafter' and it is great to see Declan continuing his legacy with the University

The late Mr Mulherin was also awarded an Honorary Award 'Companion of the University' (posthumously) during the ceremony' for his role as a community leader and passionate advocate for education and training in the Mackay region.

Another exciting event CQUniversity is set to be involved with in 2022 is the Oceania Athletics Championships at the Mackay ARC (Aquatic and Recreation Complex) from 7-11 June.

This year the Championships will take on a new and exciting format as this will be the first Area Championships to be inclusive of all age groups and abilities. It is great to welcome athletes of this calibre competing at our facilities and showcase what the region has to offer on an international stage.

It is successes like these that keep me motivated to continue driving post-secondary education in our region and continue advocating for phases 2-4 of the planned sporting facilities at the Ooralea campus.

This has the potential to be a game-changer for our region in the lead up to the 2032 Olympics and will really show how our vision as a progressive region can support the development of a diversified local economy.