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 Brian Cadigan from Department of Education and Skills to give some advice for people considering this job:

 

Brian Cadigan

Primary School Teacher

Department of Education and Skills

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  Brian Cadigan
Don't just go into teaching because you are looking for long holidays. To teach everyday you need to like children, be very patient and understanding. However I feel it is one of the most rewarding jobs out there.
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Realist?
Realist 
Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.

Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
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Occupation Details

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MEP

Job Zone

Education
Most of these occupations require qualifications at NFQ Levels 7 or 8 (Ordinary / Honours Degrees) but some do not.

Related Experience
A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an engineer must complete four years of college and work for several years in engineering to be considered qualified.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.

Job Zone Examples
Many of these occupations involve coordinating, supervising, managing, or training others. Examples include accountants, sales managers, computer programmers, teachers, chemists, environmental engineers, criminal investigators, and financial analysts.

€96k >  
MEP
Salary Range
(thousands per year)*
€96 -  
Related Information:
€96,246 pa or €8,020.53 monthly before tax. (Salary is fixed at 38.5% of a European Court of Justice judge). (After EU tax/accident insurance, €6,250.37 monthly). Member states can also tax the salary. Other expenses include:
Travel Costs to and from Brussels/Strasbourg, plus max. €4,243pa for travel to official events abroad.
Daily allowance of €304 for accommodation/meals while in Strasbourg/Brussels.
General allowance of €4,299 for office costs.
Max. €21,209pm per MEP for accredited assistants in Brussels (paid directly by the Parliament and in member states through agents to ensure proper tax and social security arrangements).
Retired MEPs entitled to pension paid by the EU from 63 years of age equal to 3.5% of salary for each full year's service to a maximum of 70% of salary (approx. €1,300pm for every 5-year term served.
Data Source(s):
European Parliament

Last Updated: April, 2015

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
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At a Glance... header image

An elected Member of the European Parliament who participates in the decision-making processes that result in EU legislation.


The Work header image

MEPs are elected to deal with European issues. The main task of an MEP is to vote on European legislation, shaping the direction it takes.

Work activities of an MEP include:

  • Assisting in the scrutiny of legislation
  • Speaking in debates
  • Constituency work

Every MEP has an opportunity to produce amendments to proposals, to argue for them at committee level, and try to win support for them at the monthly voting session in Strasbourg. These amendments reflect the amount of contact MEPs have with civil society and can range from interaction with significant lobbying groups to small NGOs or local communities. Irish MEPs came middle of the league in the average number of amendments proposed at committee stage.

 


Personal Qualitiesheader image

MEPs require an in-depth understanding of the EU and how it functions. Additional languages will also help.


Entry Routesheader image

To become an MEP you must be elected. To stand for election you must be a national of one of the 28 EU countries.

The European Parliament is made up of 775 Members (MEPs) elected from the Member States of the enlarged European Union. [2014]

Since 1979 MEPs have been directly elected by each member state for a period five-years.

Direct elections are held every 5 years, usually in June (The 2014 European elections were held in May). Each Member State decides on the form its election will take, but follows identical democratic ground rules: equality of the sexes and a secret ballot.

In all Member States, the voting age is 18, with the exception of Austria, where it is 16. European elections are already governed by a number of common principles: direct universal suffrage, proportional representation and a five-year renewable term.

The seats are, as a general rule, shared out proportionately to the population of each Member State. Each Member State has a set number of seats, the maximum being 99 and the minimum 6. Ireland has 11 seats.

Ireland 

The 11 Irish representatives to the European Parliament are elected by secret ballot on the single transferable vote system in three multi-member constituencies as follows:

  • Dublin - 3 MEPs
  • Midlands-North-West - 4 MEPs
  • South 4 MEPs

Who can become an MEP?

Every Irish citizen and every resident citizen of another EU Member State, over 21 years of age, who is not disqualified by Community or national law and is not standing as a candidate in another Member State, is eligible to be elected in Ireland to the European Parliament. Persons undergoing a prison sentence in excess of six months and persons of unsound mind are disqualified from election.

Certain occupations are incompatible with membership of the Parliament, for example, Ministers and Ministers of State, Members of the Houses of the Oireachtas, members of the judiciary, members and officials of various EU institutions, civil servants, wholetime members of the Defence Forces and Gardaí (police).

Useful Publication: How Ireland's MEPs are Elected [PDF]

Last Updated: July, 2014


Further Informationheader image

A detailed description of this occupation can be found on a number of online databases. Follow the link(s) below to access this information:

Note: you will be leaving the CareersPortal Site

Go..MEP - Amelia Andersdotter - from:  YouTube [Video]
Go..What does an MEP do? - from:  EpinUk [Video]

Related Occupationsheader image

Contactsheader image

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Organisation: EU Careers - European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO)
  Address: Candidate Contact Service, Office C-80 00/40, B1049 Brussels
  Tel: +32 (0) 2 299 3131
  Email: Click here
  Url Click here

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Organisation: European Movement Ireland
  Address: 8 Lower Fitzwilliam Street, Dublin 2,
  Tel: (0)1 662 5815
  Email: Click here
  Url Click here

 

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Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...


...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Civil & Public Service, Local Government, Politics & EU

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Further Ed & PLC Course Suggestions
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