Lieutenants Jacob Taylor and David Woolley have achieved outstanding academic results this year – leading to them both receiving a University Medal from the University of NSW.
But their studies through the Australian Defence Force Academy have also ensured they have kept up their physical fitness despite long days and nights at the computer – with training exercises a constant part of Army life.
Lieutenant Taylor, who is an ultra-marathon competitor, said exercise had played a good counterpart to the hard slog of study.
He has just completed his Bachelor of Information Technology, specialising in computer science, having previously competed a Bachelor of Business before spending a year at the Royal Military College, Duntroon.
"The physical aspect of Army training has really helped provide balance for me."
The Lake Ginninderra College graduate looks forward to a posting to Darwin next year, where he will be a General Service Officer within the Royal Australian Corps of Signals.
But the allure of further study may see him return to university after that.
Similarly, Lieutenant Woolley found his honours year of a Bachelor Arts majoring in History so enjoyable he may consider further study.
Receiving first class honours for his thesis on the psychiatric casualties during the Kokoda campaign, Lieutenant Woolley was supported by the Army to travel to PNG in September to walk the track he was so closely studying.
He too found the mix of physical training required by the Army to be a good break from long hours of study. "It is really good to have that intellectual and physical balance."
He is being posted next year to be an instructor at the School of Infantry in Singleton.
Wednesday will see UNSW chancellor David Gonski award degrees to 775 students at two ceremonies at the university's Canberra campus.
The degrees will be presented to both undergraduate trainee officers – Midshipmen and Officer Cadets of the Australian Defence Force – and postgraduate domestic and international students from the general community.
UNSW Canberra graduates almost twice as many postgraduate students as undergraduate students. Of the 775 degrees to be awarded, 408 are postgraduate coursework degrees, 77 are postgraduate research degrees and 290 are undergraduate degrees.
The Australian Defence Force Academy Graduation Parade will take place on Thursday.