It has been a long time coming, but a college degree is now within arm’s reach for Danny “The King” Kingad.
The 24-year-old Team Lakay representative is currently in his on-the-job training to finish his secondary education program, majoring in music, arts, and physical education at the University of Cordilleras.
With just one more semester to go in 2020, “The King” is finally set to earn the degree he has been longing for.
“Now when I retire from MMA, it’s a new age for me. I have another career, and it’s a fulfilling one because I will help out the youth finish their studies,” Kingad said.
Two years ago, getting through college was unlikely for Kingad. After hearing about the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix, the young phenom from Baguio City decided not to enroll so he could focus on the prestigious tournament.
His call to skip an entire school year paid dividends, since he made it to the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix Championship Final. There, he ultimately lost by unanimous decision against pound-for-pound great Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson at ONE: Century I last October.
“I was juggling a lot of things before. I had a baby, I was studying, and I was training. That’s why I decided to skip school altogether when I was preparing for the Grand Prix,” Kingad said.
“I was pinned for time, I was always tired. Now that I have time, I went back so I can finish it. Our baby is a lot bigger now so we can get someone to look after him.”
With the tournament out of the way, Kingad re-enrolled last January. But make no mistake — he is still pressed for time even up to now.
“Being in OJT is tough. I work round the clock, from 7:30 am to 4:30 pm, and then I train at night. The toughest thing about it is I only see my baby when I go home at night,” Kingad said.
“When they announce a match for me, I’ll just pass an excuse letter if I miss it. If training is from 10 am to noon, I will go to school at 7, then go to the gym from 10 to 12 to join training sessions. That’s [how] hard it will be.”
Despite all the hard work that Kingad is putting in to get his degree, he assured fans that his love for mixed martial arts never wavers.
“I want to finish this one and then I can focus on training,” Kingad said.
“If I get my degree, I can put my mind in training non-stop. I’ll compete first before teaching. I’ll be teaching, but maybe in retirement.”
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