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23 April 2012

UniSA Air FleetAn international pilot shortage has fuelled the expansion of UniSA’s Aviation School with new facilities at Parafield Airport set to be completed at the end of April.

The one million dollar upgrade will allow for an extra 420 square metres of learning space and will give students access to an environment similar to what’s found within the aviation industry. 

Head of Aviation at UniSA’s Aviation Academy, Neil Hyland says the new facilities will have a positive impact on current and future pilot shortages.

“This will significantly benefit the learning and teaching at the Aviation Academy, and will allow us to take on more students each year, which will in turn impact on the airline industry,” Hyland says.

“Many of our graduates are recruited to fly within regional aviation of Australia through to some of the world’s biggest airlines. Together with UniSA’s facilties at Mawson Lakes, the new facilities at Parafield will further their ability to make the transition from student to international pilot.”

The new building will include pre-flight, dispatch and post flight teaching facilities.

“The facilities will include a flight control centre, 10 briefing cubicles, planning desk and provide direct access to the airport’s tarmac; the teaching space will include meetings rooms,a tutorial room, student lounge, reception and amenities,” Hyland says. 

He says as the global population continues to become more mobile, the demand for aviation skills has never been stronger. 

“The advent of the low cost carrier and associated low fares, and increased frequency in the Asia Pacific region has all contributed to a pilot shortage,” he says.

UniSA’s Bachelor of Applied Science (Civil Aviation) is one of just two university courses offered in Australia allowing students to graduate with pilot accreditation through an adjoining flight school.

“The students study the Graduate Diploma in Aviation and Bachelor of Applied Science (Civil Aviation) concurrently,” says Hyland.

“After three years this provides students with the minimum qualifications necessary to fly for hire or reward.” 

Without the university course in Adelaide many aspiring pilots would need to go through private schools which require considerable upfront fees.

“The great thing is, unlike smaller pilot schools, we are fully funded by the government so students can focus more on their studies than working a job to fund their studies and it means we can also better manage the quality of the program,” says Hyland.

Media contact

  • Kelly Stone office (08) 8302 0963 mobile 0417 861 832 email kelly.stone@unisa.edu.au

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