Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Mark Spain from An Garda Síochána to give some advice for people considering this job:


Mark Spain

Garda Trainee

An Garda Síochána

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  Mark Spain
If you are unsure I would recommend coming to an open day in the college and if possible also doing the Garda Reserve. It gives the best insight imaginable into the work of Gardaí.

The Social person's interests focus on some aspect of those people in their environment. In all cases the social person enjoys the personal contact of other people in preference to the impersonal dealings with things, data and ideas found in other groups.

Many will seek out positions where there is direct contact with the public in some advisory role, whether a receptionist or a counsellor. Social people are motivated by an interest in different types of people, and like diversity in their work environments. Many are drawn towards careers in the caring professions and social welfare area, whilst others prefer teaching and other 'informing' roles.
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Upskilling Courses

Pathways To Work

Research indicates that there is a strong link between unemployment and educational attainment. The Irish government recognises the importance of education for both individuals and society. The Back To Education Programmes were introduced to provide a comprehensive range of options from which an unemployed person can choose, or be directed to, depending on the most appropriate option for his/her needs.

If you are unemployed, or simply want to further your education, there is likely to be a government scheme that will help you financially to do a course that you are interested in. 

Skills to Work is a new Irish Government jobs campaign, aimed at making it easier for jobseekers and employers to know what Government skills initiatives are available to them.

If you are interested in training or reskilling, you can complete a quick and easy questionnaire to find out which of five Government skills initiatives - Springboard, JobBridge, JobsPlus and Skillnets best suits you.

To start the skills to work questionnaire: click here

As most of these initiatives are designed to assist unemployed people return to education, improve their skills and increase their chance of gaining employment, we have more information on these programmes in our Adult Learner Section

To search for SOLAS courses and training programmes click here


Did you know ...

Springboard+ offers free places on over 280 courses leading to awards at certificate, degree and post-graduate level. Springboard+ is primarily targeted at jobseekers with a previous history of employment, but not exclusively. There are also a range of Level 8 ICT skills conversion courses available leading to qualifications for enterprise sectors which are growing and need skilled personnel, including information and communications technology (ICT); manufacturing; international financial services; and key skills for enterprise to trade internationally.

Qualifications are also available in cross-enterprise skills such as innovation, enterprise/entrepreneurship, digital marketing, and project management.   


To search FIT courses click here


To check details of available Skillnets training click here


To search their training programmes click here


Search for Youthreach Courses

As most of these initiatives are designed to assist unemployed people return to education, improve their skills and increase their chance of gaining employment, we have more information on these programmes in our Adult Learner Section: click here.

For a full list of schemes from the Department's website and to download forms click here

Need advice on what to do?

With so many possible courses, and a variety of different financial supports available, many people choose to discuss their options with a local careers advisor. Government based services provide free consultations and are available nationwide.

Click here to go to Adult Guidance Supports


  Hint: McDonald's
I have done my Crew Trainer course, my BSM course and have also completed the "I can do programme". I hope to move on in my current position and train for Shift Manager and to continue to do further training after that.
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