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.

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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National Career Skills Competition 2015 Now Open for Entries

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National Career Skills Competition 2015 Now Open for Entries

Monday, February 09, 2015 

National Career Skills Competition 2015 Now Open for Entries

The National Career Skills Competition 2015 - Have you got what it takes?

Tell us about your Work Experience and the skills you developed during your placement and be in with a chance to win.



Open to 2nd level students who have taken part in Work Experience.

Sponsored by McDonalds Ireland, three distinct competition categories apply:

  • Transition Year (TY) students 
  • Leaving Certificate (including LCA and LCVP) students 
  • Irish Language - Best entry “as Gaeilge”


We are giving away superb prizes for the top three entries in each category (TY, Leaving Cert (Incl. LCA and LCVP) and Best Entry As Gaeilge).

The winner of each category receives the amazing Apple MacBook Air Laptop, with Dr Dre Beats for each 2nd Place and Creative Bluetooth Speaker for each 3rd Place.

In addition, the school of the winning student from each category will receive a cash prize of €1,000 for the relevant programme.

The National Career Skills Award Ceremony 2015 will take place on 27th May at the Department of Education & Skills. The winning students, their parents, programme co-ordinators and principals will all be invited to attend the prize giving ceremony. 

The national co-ordinators from all programmes and the Vice President of the IGC will be in attendance, as will key individuals in the area of guidance, education and industry.

What's the Competition?

The competition is based on your work experience.

When you do a work placement, you get a chance to see and meet the people who's work and efforts contribute to the success of a company or organisation. You get a chance to see what the work is like, and think about whether you might like to do something similar some day. Love it or hate it, you will certainly know more after spending some time watching, helping out, or even contributing to the tasks and activities of these people. 

The competition asks you to investigate closely one person who you get to work alongside during your placement. It asks you to describe the job-role, find out what education is required to enter it, to notice some of the skills required to do the job well, and most importantly, to tell us what skills you have developed during that time.

In other words, you need to complete a Career Investigation for a job role you observe during your work experience.

How to Enter

Competition Entries can be made online, by e-mail or by post.

Online Entries 
Online entry is accessible to students who register with (click on the 'Sign Up' link at the top of every page). 

Once registered with the site, follow the links to complete the National Career Skills Competition.

Postal Entries
Completed Entries should be sent to:

Programme Name (Category being entered - (Leaving Cert/LCA/LCVP, TY, Gaeilge)
National CareerSkills Competition
7 Richview Office Park

Good luck and remember if you are not in you cannot win!

View 2014 Winners

Terms and Conditions apply

The CareersPortal Team