Martin Copland

Pilot and Junior Medical Doctor

Martin attended Darwin High for all of his senior schooling (1981-1985), after Parap Primary School. In his final year he was appointed as a school captain and a student representative on the governing council.

Martin Copland

Martin's story

After doing well in Year 12, Martin went on to join the Air Force in January 1986. He studied aerospace engineering at the new defence force academy in Canberra. After completing his degree he went on to Air Force pilot training, finishing in 1991. Martin has flown a variety of transport aircraft (including the C130 Hercules and the BBJ VIP jet), and during his time with the Air Force he lived in many places around Australia. Martin has served on warlike operations in East Timor, Iraq and Afghanistan and been deployed on humanitarian operations to Indonesia following the Boxing Day Tsunami. He is also an experienced military paratrooper.

My favourite memory of Darwin High was actually winning the 100 sprint in the 1985 school athletics carnival, I was a dark horse in that event and it surprised a lot of people. Winning the high jump was not a surprise and I went on to win the NT championships in that event a few months later. Speaking in front of the school at each assembly was one of the biggest challenges I faced
I have completed some further university study including a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) and more recently a post graduate degree in Medicine. So after 30 years I am still with the Air Force and have completed a variety of jobs in several career streams, currently I am working as a junior medical doctor in the Gosford / Wyong hospitals on the central coast of NSW and in 2018 I will go back to the Air Force to work as a doctor. One day I will be a General Practitioner as I enjoy the variety of that type of medicine.
I think my time at Darwin High School prepared me well for higher education (and I have had many years of that). I have many lifelong friends from my time at high school.
Doing well at school academically is important, your results open doors to university and with the right education you can go anywhere. However it is never too late to start a new career direction (I started studying medicine at the age of 43). Hard work and dedication can get you anywhere. I also think a balanced life outside work / study is very important. For example I have three hobbies that keep me very busy — vegetable gardening, triathlon and hang gliding

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