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Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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2 Irish natives with degrees studying vet med in Slovakia

As part of our popular Student Focus segment, That’s Farming editor, Catherina Cunnane, speaks to two Irish natives, who are training to become vets at the University of Veterinary Medicine in Kosice, Slovakia, having completed their undergraduate degrees in Ireland.

Tara Martyn

Galway native, Tara Martyn, attained her undergraduate degree in equine science at University of Limerick, and completed her third-year placement at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute in Kentucky as a veterinary technician.

After graduation, she worked for a year in Kildangan Stud – the headquarters of Godolphin, Ireland – and from here, travelled to Kosice in Slovakia and started studying veterinary medicine.

She is currently in the third year of a four-year postgraduate degree at University of Veterinary Medicine in Kosice, Slovakia, and it is her hope to graduate as a qualified vet in July 2024.

“As University College Dublin (UCD) was not an option for me, I had to decide between all the other European vet schools,” she told That’s Farming editor, Catherina Cunnane.

“It was a difficult decision as the course in Dublin sounded quite attractive, and going anywhere else felt like second best.”

“I asked around, and a vet advised me that no matter where you study, you do the majority of your learning ‘on the job’.”

“Even if you are at different levels in your knowledge after graduation, you can achieve and strive for any level once you graduate,” she added.

Read her profile via this link.

Declan McIntyre

Declan (26) had talked himself out of veterinary medicine during his second-level studies as he “realised I had slacked in school up until this point and never gave it the time or effort which was required”.

While he desired to become a vet from his early years, he selected a “very random assortment of courses” on his CAO application.

“I did not even put veterinary on my CAO application. After the Leaving Certificate exams, I did not know what I was going to do with my life.”

“I had been offered most of the courses on my CAO but still did not feel passionate about any of them, so I declined.”

“As a result, I did not go to university straight after school. I was unsure of what I wanted to do next.”

“So, as I was already working in the local fish factory as my summer job, I stayed there in September while most of my friends and classmates went to university.”

“This year, which I spent at home, gave me a lot of time to reflect, grow up, and think about what I wanted to do next.”

“I had always enjoyed working with timber and strongly considered doing a carpentry course. But, at the last second, I applied for veterinary nursing instead.”

After four years of study and training in veterinary nursing, he began his studies in general veterinary medicine in Slovakia in 2019 and will graduate in 2023.

Read more about the Donegal native’s journey in part one of his interview and part two.

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