Luke Marshall, graduated in Sport and Exercise Sciences last June, but outside of his degree he kept extremely busy building his success on the basketball court, representing his club and country in the British Wheelchair Basketball (BWB) Premier League and captaining his team twice during his five times representing NI at the UK Sainsburys School Games.

Donations from graduates and staff meant Luke was awarded two Sport Scholarships from the Student Opportunity Fund, highlighting his success on the court and his potential in the sport.

The Sport Scholarships financially support our elite athletes who are juggling their degree along with their training and competing.

During my time at university, I spent my placement year as a student-athlete at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, helping the team finish in their highest league position in their history! The College Championships were played in a 15,000-capacity arena outside Chicago, it was an amazing experience, and one of my playing highlights!

Having coached and represented UU in the British Wheelchair Basketball University Championships, where UUJ improved in their overall rankings from the previous year, I now coach a new team in Bangor (Bangor Bulls Wheelchair Basketball club).

Presently, I am also hoping to be selected for Team NI at the upcoming Commonwealth Games in Birmingham 2022. This will be the first-ever time that wheelchair basketball is going to be included as a sport at a Commonwealth Games. The selection process will be even more competitive because the Commonwealth Games have opted to play 3x3 basketball (instead of the usual 5v5), and only 4 players from the province will be selected.

My dream is to play in a professional league in Spain, Germany or Italy in the next few years, having as long a career as I can.

Thank you to our donors for supporting students like Luke on their many achievements. Such support really does transform lives.

Best of luck in the Commonwealth Games selection process Luke!