The power of an idea
Unprecedented growth followed a 1970s development boom on the Sunshine Coast, one of the state’s most popular tourist destinations. In the 30 years between 1986 and this year, its population trebled from about 118,000 to more than 330,000 people, perched along the beautiful strip of beach, bush and mountains between Caloundra and Noosa.
By the early 1990s, it still did not have a university. This was anathema to the visionaries in its midst.
How did this coastal community reinvent its future to focus on education as a vocation?
Read the story of USC’s early days from the people who created this history.
USC's first promotional video
A blast from the past. See the Sippy Downs campus as it was in the early years in this advertising from 1999.
Major General Peter Arnison, Governor of Queensland, officially opens the University of the Sunshine Coast on 13 April 1999.
VC's opening remarks
Professor Paul Thomas opens proceedings at the official opening on 13 April 1999.
Step back in time - early years photo album
The wall comes down, Friday 20 November 1998 at 10.00am.
Demolition day. The Sunshine Coast University College wall is bulldozed the day after the University of the Sunshine Coast achieves full university status (19 November 1998)
Queensland Education Minister Pat Comben and Chancellor Ian Kennedy AO at the 100-hecture university site.
Aerial view 1995
Aerial view 2010
Fields overlooking the Health and Sport Centre 2009
Cafe La Tin
Professor Paul Thomas and USC staff at Cafe La Tin
Friday afternoons in "The Shed" (1996)
The first University Council
The first Graduation ceremony 13 April 1999
Olympic athletes train at the USC athletics track (2000)
Secure your piece of history
Visions is a vibrantly written coffee table book that tells the story of USC through the eyes of people who have shaped its past and are now taking the University – and the wider community – into the future.
See the historical timeline of events that took USC from a greenfield to a thriving campus
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Read an extract from "The power of an idea"
Find out why Paul Thomas' bedtime attire was discussed in parliament
Judy Jakeman tells the story of the first enrolment at USC
I always wanted to get a degree, and I wanted to support Shari through hers