Cork's James Leonard to graduate with top Master's degree later today

Cork's James Leonard to graduate with top Master's degree later today
James Leonard on The Tommy Tiernan Show last month. 

James Leonard, a Cork man who recently stunned the nation with his story of overcoming addiction, is one of over 1,100 students graduating at University College Cork this week.

James, who appeared on The Tommy Tiernan Show last month detailing his history with drug abuse, will receive his First Class Honours Masters in Criminology at the conferring ceremony in UCC later today. 

Speaking ahead of the ceremony, James said he chose his course as it is a field in which he has long held an interest.

"During my undergraduate in Youth & Community Work I completed two placements at Probation Service funded projects. 

"I also researched drug policy for my undergrad dissertation. 

"The Criminology masters was the natural choice for me to get a more in depth understanding of theories and perspectives related to deviance, organised crime, recovery, desistance, youth justice etc," he said.

James now works for the Cork Education & Training Board Youth Services.

"The practical skills gained on work experience on the Youth & Community degree coupled with the academic skills of the Masters put me in a position to be employed by Cork ETB Youth Services where both sets of skills, and indeed knowledge, are very relevant. 

"The Criminology masters complimented the Youth & Community bachelors nicely and greatly improved my employability," he said.

UCC Conferrings are live-streamed and available to view online. 

Last year, they were viewed by an audience of over 20,000 people around the world. 

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