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 Nicola O'Higgins from Bord Iascaigh Mhara to give some advice for people considering this job:


Nicola O'Higgins


Bord Iascaigh Mhara

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  Nicola O'Higgins
You need to work with people in the industry as knowledge is everything  - where to buy, who from, when etc. Health and safety courses and a pleasant manner and drive are also important.

Not surprisingly, some aspect of the natural sciences will run through the Naturalists interests - from ecological awareness to nutrition and health. People with an interest in horticulture, land usage and farming (including fish) are Naturalists.

Some Naturalists focus on animals rather than plants, and may enjoy working with, training, caring for, or simply herding them. Other Naturalists will prefer working with the end result of nature's produce - the food produced from plants and animals. Naturalists like solving problems with solutions that show some sensitivity to the environmental impact of what they do. They like to see practical results, and prefer action to talking and discussing.
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Explore Your Career Options in STEM

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Explore Your Career Options in STEM

Friday, December 11, 2015 

Explore Your Career Options in STEM

Many thousands of Leaving Certificate students in Ireland will be spending time over their Christmas holidays researching study and career options and trying to decide what to put on their CAO application forms.

Many of their parents will also be trying their best to give useful advice and hoping to guide their son or daughter into pathways they feel will provide them with interesting, meaningful careers, with decent job prospects.

Watch our new video on exploring career options in STEM ...

According to research carried out in 2014 by Science Foundation Ireland’s Smart Futures programme, students’ main concern when making their CAO choice is whether they will “fit in”, ranking it higher than other factors like career prospects.

So it's important that students have a chance to explore study or career paths in science, technology and engineering to prevent them from potentially dismissing them just because of perceived negative stereotypes.

Equally it's important that they experience hands-on STEM activities for themselves and talk to real people working in these roles, where they can ask practical questions and get real insights, allowing them to make informed decisions about what they'd like to do after they finish school.

Parents are encouraged to check out our parent resource section to help them to learn more about STEM and how to encourage their children to explore these options. 

While teachers and guidance counsellors are encouraged to request free career talks from STEM volunteers for their school.

A good starting point is the Smart Futures guide to STEM career routes, which outlines many career options from biotechnology to food research, programming to sports science. Click here for more information.