ON A HIGH: Tim Carney is the first student to graduate from the University of Southern Queensland's aviation program.
ON A HIGH: Tim Carney is the first student to graduate from the University of Southern Queensland's aviation program. Rob Williams

USQ's first aviation grad heads into booming sector

MANY university graduates are ready to take on the world the moment their studies have finished and with a degree in hand, the sky is the limit.

For 23-year-old Tim Carney, that is especially true.

He is the first graduate of the University of Southern Queensland's aviation program.

Having held a fascination with planes from a young age, Mr Carney attended Aviation State High School in Brisbane with every subject at the school revolving around the field.

He remembers walking into his dad's office to watch him play Flight Simulator on the computer.

"In mathematics you might have a problem about an aircraft coming in at this angle with this amount of crosswind," he said.

In 2016, he was a part of the first cohort of students accepted into the program at USQ Springfield and is the first to finish with a Bachelor of Aviation, majoring in aviation management.

Unlike most of his peers, Mr Carney didn't study to become a pilot.

"I chose to go down the management path because I'm a more business oriented person and I enjoy that side of things," he said.

"There's a lot more to aviation than just flying.

"There needs to be people on the ground making sure the airport and the aircraft are operating efficiently and effectively. There are a lot of jobs in aviation safety to ensure the industry is as safe as possible.

"I'm really excited to see how airports and organisations in the aviation industry operate and to start applying the skills and knowledge I gained from my degree."

He is close to locking down a graduate position at a Queensland airport, learning more about cargo, logistics and the general management of the facility.

Once he gains further insight into the industry, he will decide a more specialised path to follow but long term he wants to move to a large overseas airport such as Dubai International.

Head of USQ Aviation Professor Paul Bates is excited to see other students follow in Mr Carney's footsteps into the 'booming' aviation sector, with the cohort growing each year.

"Tim was an exemplary student and didn't put a foot wrong throughout the program," he said.

"What really stood out was his dedication to learning and the positive impact he had on not only his fellow classmates, but everyone he came in contact with at the University.

"He is an incredible role model for other students and a prime example of how we encourage all our students to proactively engage in all aspects of university and strive to become more.

"I am delighted to see Tim graduate and wish him well in his future career."