Damien began his studies at Ulster as a mature student with a young family after being made redundant in 2016.
"After the birth of my first child, Damien Og, and after being made redundant from my previous job, I made the decision to return to study in order to pursue a career in diagnostic radiography.
As an avid Gaelic footballer, I had graced the imaging department many times with various injuries so it always had that allure for me. I really admired the career path which led me to undertake an access course in Biomedical science at the Belfast Metropolitan College."
During his time at Ulster University, Damien went over and above by contributing to his course through his roles of Course Representative, co-founding member of the Ulster University Radiography Society and Student Observer for the professional body, The Society of Radiographers. Through his role Damien had the opportunity to travel across the UK and meet professionals and students to discuss best practice ideas that would be then implemented by the UK Council.
Damien successfully balanced his study and course commitments while working and raising his son, speaking on his experience, Damien said:
“With the support of my wife, Nuala, I was able to juggle two part-time jobs, study and family life. The companies I worked for were flexible around my university timetable and I also had amazing help from my lecturers and classmates which made the three years both manageable and enjoyable.”
Damien has successfully secured employment within the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust and will become a frontline member of the workforce as a diagnostic radiographer. Speaking on the future, Damien said:
“I don’t think that Ulster University has seen the last of me as I hope to further my studies in additional Radiography modalities such as Ultrasound, CT or MRI as I progress in my career.
This year is also a really exciting time for me personally as my wife and I are expecting our second child in September. Further to that, I’m looking forward to getting stuck in to my new role and give back how I can during what is a difficult time for Northern Ireland and the world.