When CQUniversity student Declan Mulherin crosses the stage at today's Mackay graduation ceremony' his late father Timothy Mulherin will also be recognised.
"I can't really put into words what it means'" Declan said.
"Dad was always eager to help everyone and it's pretty special to see him being recognised by the University on the same day that I have my graduation."
The late Mr Mulherin will be awarded a Companion of the University (posthumously) for his role as a community leader and passionate advocacy for education and training in the Mackay region.
"Most of my family will be there – lots of uncles and aunts from all over Queensland and NSW will also be in attendance'" Declan said.
After six years of study' Declan said he was thrilled to finally be crossing the stage.
"I'm very happy – it still doesn't feel real yet."
A Mackay local' Declan said choosing to study the Bachelor of Science (Chiropractic) and Master of Clinical Chiropractic at CQUniversity's Mackay campus was a no brainer.
"Chiropractic programs in Australia at the time were only being offered in NSW and WA so it was an easy decision to stay in Mackay and study at CQU'" he explained.
"I have just started working since finishing studies at Move It Chiropractic Mackay as their newest Chiropractor. I am loving every minute of it and are lucky to have some great mentorship."
Declan said he'd always wanted to be a chiropractor and was excited to finally be living out his childhood dream.
"I was always eager as a child to help people and it was a major driving force in choosing chiropractic as I have seen first-hand the benefits that it can give people'" he said.
"Having played lots of sport as a kid and into my adult life' I have seen so many people live with pain and am always eager to help them and that is why I chose chiropractic!"
Declan attributed his successes while studying at CQU to a number of people.
"The biggest support was my family who always helped me in any way they could' but I certainly could not have done it without the support of the local chiropractic tutors Marti Harris' David Hannah' Eileen Petersen and Anne Jensen'" he said.
"All of these people helped me develop the skills needed to help the wider community."
Declan was also supported through a scholarship during his undergraduate degree and said that provided him with significant relief.
"The BMA/BHP scholarship was a massive financial support through my bachelor degree. It took a lot of the stress out that can be associated when studying and unable to work'" he said.
"I cannot thank the people from BMA/BHP for the scholarship it made paying for external courses and textbooks much less stressful.
"I will always be thankful for the experience and time I spent at CQU."
Declan will join more than 150 fellow graduates who are set be presented with their testamur's at CQUniversity's Mackay graduation.