Former NRC student secures scholarship


A former Northern Regional College student from Newtownabbey has been awarded a prestigious J P McManus All Ireland Scholarship Award.

Darren Downing studied Computing for four years at the college’s Newtownabbey campus.

After completing a Level 2 Diploma, he progressed to complete the Level 3 Extended Diploma with three Distinction* - the equivalent of three A*s at A level.

He is now doing a degree in Computing Technologies at Ulster University.

As one of 125 students across the island of Ireland to win a JP McManus scholarship, Darren will receive full academic financial support for the duration of his third level studies at university.

The scholarships are valued at £5,500 per annum and continue for the duration of the undergraduate programme chosen by each scholarship winner.

Darren said he will work hard every day to prove he is a worthy winner. He added: “It is a once in a lifetime opportunity and I’m most appreciative to family and lecturers at NRC for all their encouragement and support.”

Sponsored by JP McManus, the educational scheme is awarded to a minimum of two high-achieving students from each of the 32 counties.

The programme is administered by the Department of Education and Skills and the Department for the Economy with support from the Department of Education, Northern Ireland.