Donald studied Natural Sciences at the University of Bath, majoring in Biology and Organic Chemistry. During his studies, he spent an intercalated year at Kew Gardens, where he applied molecular and cytogenetic techniques to study the evolution of Arecaceae (palm) and Nymphaceae (water lily) genomes. He completed his undergraduate studies in 2014 with a project that employed molecular and confocal microscopy techniques to study hormone signalling in plant reproduction. Donald obtained his PhD in 2018 from the University of Bristol. In collaboration with industry, he studied plant developmental responses to light and the circadian clock. He continued his research through a short-term post-doc position, but alongside a geographic move, he opted to take a break from academia, working in project management and events. In August 2019, Donald returned to laboratory work with a post-doc position at Micropathology Ltd, where he will be involved in the company’s molecular diagnostics and assay validation.