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Ready for the sky: First Indigenous student graduates from RMIT Flight School

December 11, 2019 Lifestyle No Comments Email Email

This year, Bachelor of Applied Science (Aviation) graduand Zachary Cattlin will become the first Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander student to graduate from an aviation program at RMIT.

He will graduate at Marvel Stadium on at the RMIT graduation ceremony on Wednesday 18 December, alongside more than 9,000 fellow students – RMIT’s biggest event of the year.

Zac, whose family originates from the Wamba-Wamba Nation in the Murray Lower Darling Rivers, grew up with a passion for aviation, however never expected to turn it into a career.

“From a young age I was interested in aviation, but I never really thought it would take me anywhere,” he said.

“It wasn’t until I started my course that I began to love the industry. As I began to fly and learnt about the aircraft I started to enjoy it more.”

“I’d like to become a commercial pilot for a major airline and fly internationally.”

Coming to university, his biggest challenge was adapting from a country lifestyle to the hustle and bustle of the city, but he said the support of RMIT’s Ngarara Willim Centre helped with the transition.

“The Centre has been very supportive throughout my studies, and other Indigenous students are always willing to lend a hand, especially if you are having problems with anything regarding university or personal issues,” Zac said.

“The RMIT community was inviting and all my lecturers and flight instructors have been willing to help me at all times.”

RMIT Flight Instructor Rhys Barrett complimented Zac’s professionalism and work ethic.

“Zac has been an outstanding student, his work ethic from day one set him up for success. He has shown good flying technique and his ability to pick up new skills quickly will serve him well in the future,” he said.

“He shows great professionalism and a friendly persona, sharing the cockpit with him has been a pleasure. I have every confidence that Zac will achieve his goals in Aviation.”

After he graduates, Zac will be eligible to achieve his goal of becoming a commercial pilot.

With sites in Point Cook and Bendigo, RMIT Flight Training has been training pilots since 1994 and has successfully trained over 1000 pilots.

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