Matthew McCole is Sparring his Way to Success at ATU Donegal

Matthew McCole is Sparring his Way to Success at ATU Donegal

News, Student News, Staff News / Wednesday 29 June 2022

Matthew saw the benefit of studying close to home as it allowed him to reach International success in boxing


ATU Donegal student Matthew is currently undertaking a Masters by Research in Science after completing his undergraduate degree, the BSc (Hons) in Pharmaceutical & Medicinal Science at ATU Donegal.


Outside of the science labs Matthew is an elite athlete, competing with great success at an international level in Boxing. It was this enthusiasm and dedication in sport that solidified his decision to study at ATU Donegal, Matthew saw the benefit of studying close to home, in order to keep training with his local boxing club in Dungloe.    


Matthew was one of the top scoring students in his leaving certificate year, and many people around him expected him to pursue his studies at ‘one of the big universities’. Indeed, with the high points he achieved in his Leaving Certificate he had the choice to study at any university in Ireland, however, his mind was set on studying closer to home at ATU Donegal.


Looking back on his choice to study at ATU Donegal, Matthews says “I wouldn’t change a thing! I am so glad I followed my gut and, against some people’s ideas of what or where I should go, I had the confidence to choose what felt right for me. Studying close to home allowed me to balance my academic life with my sporting commitments and ambition to continue boxing competitively. Being able to hit this balance, I was able to excel academically and in sport, so much so in fact that I received a Sports Scholarship for most of my undergraduate studies”.

“What I enjoyed most about studying at ATU Donegal was the practical and hands on approach the modules were taught in. This, and the small class sizes, which made asking questions easier, made for a very supportive learning environment. I must have really enjoyed it because I’m now back at ATU Donegal doing a Masters! I would encourage any student to look at what’s on offer at ATU Donegal, it couldn’t have worked out better for me”.



The deadline for the CAO ‘Change-of-Mind’ facility is 5:00pm, 1 July. Over 60% of CAO applicants use this facility each year, and with the deadline fast approaching, ATU Donegal is encouraging prospective students to consider ATU Donegal in their CAO choices.

If you would like to follow in Matthew’s footsteps, and if you are looking for advice or information on your Level 8 and Level 6/7 CAO programmes options at ATU Donegal, ahead of the CAO ‘Change of Mind’ deadline, contact the ATU Donegal Schools Engagement Team via phone on (074) 9186104 or by email on   

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