Two of Toowoomba’s top educational leaders have had their achievements recognised at the University of Southern Queensland honorary award ceremony, held at the campus on Thursday 7 October.

Maryanne Walsh and Peter Hauser were both named a Fellow of the University for their long association with the educational institution. University of Southern Queensland Chancellor John Dornbusch said the titles were presented after “great thought and deliberation”.

“This is a rare honour awarded to those who have provided a distinguished service to the community for the university,” he said. “(Our recipients) have achieved incredible things in their individual fields through many decades of hard work, commitment to excellence and persistence. Thank you for everything that you have done and continue to do for our community and nation.”

Ms Walsh is the Executive Principal of Centenary Heights State High School with a career spanning almost 45 years. Under her leadership, the school has achieved an outstanding academic record, maintaining a position in the top five per cent of Queensland across all education sectors. “Receiving this Fellowship is both humbling and a privilege,” she said.

“One of the highlights of my career is the friendships I’ve made along the way – the things I have achieved, I have done so on the shoulders of those with whom I work and have worked. The ultimate satisfaction in my job is watching so many students and young people go on to carve ethical and successful lives for themselves. To be acknowledged as an educator at this level is quite surreal.”

Mr Hauser retired as the headmaster of Toowoomba Grammar School in 2020, after 18 years in the position. During this time, he chaired the Great Public Schools Association of Queensland Headmasters’ Council as well as the local Darling Downs Secondary Schools Principals group.

“It’s very special to be named a Fellow of the University, I’ve worked hard throughout my career and this is uplifting,” he said. “To be in a position within a school where you can make changes to improve the lives of students, staff and parents is very rewarding. Education can certainly change your life.”

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