MSc in Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology graduate and Sligo native Caradh O’Donovan has gone on to international success since her days at WIT
How have your studies at WIT helped you to get where you are today? Studying at WIT has been really helpful in my career as an athlete. As a Kickboxer the mental aspects of performance and competition are crucial and is often the difference between winning and losing. And so the Masters in Sport Psychology was brilliant for me on a personal level in my sport. Since I graduated from WIT I have went on to win World Cups in Kickboxing, multiple World Kickboxing Championship medals and European Kickboxing Championship titles.
Why did you choose your course at WIT? I had always wanted to pursue a Postgraduate Degree in Sport Psychology and I had heard really great things about WIT before I applied. It was geographically quite far from where I was based at the time but I knew it was a great course and the college itself had a great reputation so when I did get an offer for the course I jumped to accept it.
What advice would you give to students considering your course? It's been almost 10 years since I studied in WIT and I'm sure the course has evolved since then but I really would recommend this course to anyone with an interest in sport or exercise psychology. The lecturers are brilliant and really dedicated to helping and supporting you. WIT had a great sense of community about it and made me feel relaxed and at ease from day one. The course content is really engaging and leaves you equipped to take up employment in a range of sports/physical activity areas.
What advice would you give to those unsure of college or of what course to pick? Always choose an area you're passionate about - you will always find a great postgrad career when you love what you do.
What are you doing now? Since I graduated from WIT I have had a lot of success in my sport of Kickboxing. I have been training twice daily for the past number of years to represent Ireland at the highest level of the sport worldwide and most recently have won the largest World Cup in the Kickboxing World. I am currently training to compete to win the WAKO World Series and will compete in World Cups in Hungary and Italy in the coming weeks to take my World ranking from third to first place. I am also training to win the WAKO World Kickboxing Championships later this year.
I am an Athlete Mentor with Sky Sports Living For Sports which involves working with secondary schools and young people to inspire them to achieve their goals with transferable skills that elite athletes use to win and achieve in their sport. I am also an ambassador with sportswomen.ie and regularly blog on this site and also on my own website www.caradhodonovan.com.
More recently, I have began a new sporting journey by taking up WKF Karate. I started training in Karate in late January of this year and last month became the Senior Elite National Champion at -55kg. I am hoping to improve further in Karate and look forward to developing quickly and putting myself in contention to be selected for international events with Team Ireland.
I am member of Tallaght Martial Arts in Dublin and our international and national results appear regularly in our local media for example the Echo newspaper or the InTallaght magazine.
I have also appeared on national media following various World Cups/Championships wins. Here's a couple of recent examples: