It is difficult to pick just one highlight from three years worth of experiences. To be the first member of my family to qualify from college was a major achievement but meeting my beautiful girlfriend has to be the main highlight. We were in the same mathematics class the whole way through but only really got a chance to know one another during some group work in our final year and haven't looked back since.
I have always been involved heavily with sports and my time in Maynooth allowed me to continue developing this aspect of my life.
The easy accessibility of the college via train for me cut down on commute time and allowed more time and focus to be spent on the areas I was passionate about. Also my timetable and the college facilities gave me the opportunity to train extensively.
I was already heavily involved in club activities, six days per week, before beginning my studies at Maynooth but also added some additional variety to my schedule through the college societies and facilities. I began boxing and placed second at the inter varsities. I was a member of the sports karate club and almost qualified for the national squad. Also I tried out Suas, snooker, soccer, and the gym.
For me, Maynooth just seemed different to all the other colleges I visited on open days. It was unlike the colleges in Dublin that often seemed too cramped or hectic, yet still had everything I needed and was close enough to Dublin at the same time. Because the college is such a large part of Maynooth itself, I also found the atmosphere there to be different and better than elsewhere.
Find your passion, and go after it! Too many people concentrate on what profession they think will make the most money, or will keep parents and friends happy, but then end up unhappy themselves and drop out. Passion is the key to success.
I have been on several career paths so far but none really excited or satisfied me until I found Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and fell head over heals into it.
Initially this career only paid out in happiness, but one can only survive so long without an income so I learnt how to run a business based around this, coach classes, create a brand, run events, make equipment - the list goes on and on.
I found something that I was truly passionate about doing, subsequently became one of the best in the country at it and thereafter figured out how to make a good living both directly and indirectly from this. I have been on this career path, full time, for over five years now and it is one of the best things I have ever done.
I think my time at Maynooth helped me be more, want more and achieve more. I have won the lottery of life and am truly grateful.
Ability to become a full time professional athlete and coach, in an amateur sport.
Coached multiple European medalists.
Held some of the countries best ever tournaments and raised the standard of tournaments in Ireland.
Helped facilitate the qualification of five athlete for the world championships, never previously achieved in Ireland.
Set up a national organization to oversea the development of the sport of Brazilian Jiu—Jitsu in Ireland
Established two separate equipment companies and brands.
Introduced over five hundred people to the sport of BJJ and will multiply this number over the coming years.
Assisted my brother in pioneering how BJJ should be taught to children in Ireland, something which we shall be refining indefinitely.