Two out of every three students who sat the Leaving Certificate in Inishowen this year have continued their studies at third level institutions across the country.
Details of the progression from secondary school to 25 third level institutions across Ireland were provided by the Department of Education and published last week.
It showed that 278 (67%) of the 417 students who sat the traditional Leaving Certificate here in June advanced to third level.
That’s down on 2020 when 78% of Inishowen students obtained places on a third level course.
The Atlantic Technological University (ATU) is the most popular destination for Inishowen students with more than half of all those who progress to third level continuing their studies there.
ATU was formed earlier this year through the amalgamation of the institutes of technology at Letterkenny, Sligo and Galway-Mayo, and is treated as a single institution in the Department of Education’s figures.
In all, 152 Inishowen students enrolled in ATU in September, and we can safely assume the vast majority of those are in Letterkenny.
In 2020, 85% of Inishowen students attending one of the ATU’s constituent college went to Letterkenny.
Ulster University, like ATU an institution that’s broken across multiple campuses, in this case Magee in Derry, Coleraine, Jordanstown and Belfast, was the second most popular destination for Inishowen students.
Some 51 students from Inishowen enrolled in Ulster University this year.
Queen’s University Belfast was the destination for 16 Inishowen students, including six apiece from Carndonagh Community School and Scoil Mhuire.
While ATU was, by far, the most likely destination for students from each local secondary school, Ulster University was second for Carndonagh Community School (18 students), Moville Community College (13) and Crana College (12).
Scoil Mhuire, with 77%, had the highest proportion of students advancing to third level.
Some 68% of Moville Community College students went on to third level, as well as 67% at Crana College and 62% in Carndonagh Community School.
Gaelcholaiste Chineál Eoghain was included in the national figures for the first time.
Three of the 12 students who sat the Leaving there advanced to third level, one in Galway, Queens and ATU.
Please note: The North West Regional College, a popular destination for many Inishowen students, is not included in this analysis, nor are universities or third level institutions outside Ireland.