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 Tomas Flanagan from St. Michael's House to give some advice for people considering this job:

 

Tomas Flanagan

Occupational Therapist

St. Michael's House

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  Tomas Flanagan

I would advise anyone interested in Occupational Therapy to read up on the profession or else try to meet a qualified Occupational Therapist and talk to them about their work.

The internet can be a great resource in getting information. Also information from the universities might indicate if this is a course that is suited to you. A lot of the course work relies on you being a self-directed learner. This makes the course different to other more mainstream/academic courses as the onus is on the student to complete a lot of work independently.

As this is a caring profession an interest in working with people is a must. You also need to be a good communicator as you will be working closely with clients, families and other staff on an ongoing basis.

Organisational skills are essential to enable you to manage a caseload.

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Social?
Social 
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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Third Secretary- Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

"All new Third Secretaries undertake language lessons and there are many more training opportunities." Carol Staunton, Third Secretary- Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade. 

I graduated from NUI Galway with a PhD in Sociology in 2013 and, after working for some time in the pharmaceutical sector, I joined the Institute of Technology, Tralee as a Research Assistant on the UNESCO Chair in Inclusive Physical Education, Sport, Recreation and Fitness.

Working with various state agencies, international organisations and interlocutors on the programme prepared me well for life in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, which began in March 2015 when I entered the diplomatic stream as a Third Secretary.

Since then, I have been assigned to the Department’s Trade Division, where I work on economic messaging and cultural relations. My role is varied and dynamic; I speak with colleagues abroad every day and meet with various national stakeholders with one goal in mind – to promote Ireland abroad.

The Department’s work in this area has contributed greatly to the signs of economic recovery that we are beginning to see, and being a part of that work has been a real education. While I am firmly focused on my current responsibilities, one eye is always on future postings abroad.

All new Third Secretaries undertake language lessons and there are many more training opportunities besides, which have enhanced my skill-set and my overall experience in the Department so far. It’s been a wonderful journey from the recruitment process to commencing my service, and I thoroughly recommend it.

gradpublicjobs.ie 


Article by: Carol Staunton