Vale, Gus Wiles

19 Dec 2014

It is with great sadness that I convey the passing of our dear friend and colleague, R.J. 'Gus' Wiles.

For over four decades, Gus has been the heart and soul of the pre-eminent chemical engineering school in Australia.

The 'go to' person for students, colleagues, and industry alike, Gus' personal dedication to chemical engineering education remains unmatched.

Throughout his time at UQ, Gus provided a very important connection between university and industry in the 43 years since he started as a Senior Demonstrator at the University.

Since his retirement from Senior Lecturer in 2000, Gus continued to work for the school in a voluntary capacity, and remained a familiar face around the offices.

Well ahead of his time, Gus acknowledged the importance of a well-rounded education - one which included international education, vacation work opportunities, and industry networking.

He encouraged his students to undertake semesters abroad at international universities and broaden their engineering knowledge and skills - something which he often provided personal financial assistance for.

Gus' legacy and dedication to students will forevermore continue at UQ's School of Chemical Engineering through the Gus Wiles Scholarship which has received more than $200,000 in donations from alumni since its establishment in 2011. Gus was both fiercely proud of, and incredibly humbled by the support shown by alumni and friends since its establishment. You may wish to honour Gus's contribution to Chemical Engineering by supporting his scholarship, which we hope will continue to grow.

To the family and friends of this incredible man, I offer my sincere condolences. We have started a LinkedIn thread here, so that people may offer their own special memory of Gus, and what made him so special.

May his legacy forever endure.

Your sincerely,

Pete Halley
Head, School of Chemical Engineering