Jack Kavanagh: Trinity Graduate of Pharmacy (BSc)

Aged just 20, a spinal cord injury in 2012 left Jack Kavanagh paralysed from the armpits down. He had  limited use of his arms and hands, 15% muscle function in all. Defying the odds, Jack returned to TCD (Trinity College Dublin) only thirteen months post injury to continue his pharmacy studies. He would go on to, as he put it, show that “limitations are only perceived”. The way Jack, a former competitive windsurfer, tells his story and goes about his new life has inspired a far-reaching audience. He offers a unique perspective on overcoming adversity and turning challenges into advantages. Jack graduated from Trinity in 2017 and went on to complete a master's in pharmacy at the Royal College of Surgeons Ireland. In his work as a performance and resilience coach, and Jack is passionate about accompanying people on their journey of wellbeing, mental fitness, personal development and leadership. He works with individuals and groups as they transform towards the person or team they want to and can be. In 2014,  he presented the TED Talk ‘Fearless like a Child’ before making the documentary ‘Breaking Boundaries’ in 2017. He appeared on the Tommy Tiernan Show in 2022 and is host of the Only Human podcast.

Interview with Jack Kavanagh

Former Graduate Intern Courtney McGrath talks with Disabled Leader Jack Kavanagh

Portrait of Jack Kavanagh by Tara Kearns