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|►||Where to find Professional Advice|
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:
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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|Moate Business College|
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|►||The Changing World of Work|
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Because I didn’t do my leaving certificate in Ireland I didn’t have to make big choices earlier on in my life. It was when I went to college that I chose the subjects that I wanted to do. I chose to major in Chemistry and to minor in Biology as a Pre Medical School student. In America you have to complete a degree first before you are accepted into medical school. By my third year of college I fell in love with chemistry and no longer wished to go to med school. It is funny how it all worked out but I have no regrets about it. I really enjoy being a chemist.
I actually went to three different secondary schools. Moyle Park College in Clondalkin where I completed my Junior Certificate. Plantation High School, Fort Lauderdale Florida (1 Year) Hartselle High School, Hartselle, Alabama (2 Years) – High School Diploma. went to undergraduate in Tennessee in Maryville College where I did a degree in Chemistry and then moved to California to the University of California Riverside where I completed my Masters of Science in Analytical Chemistry.
Graduate school specifically was where I really learned to understand chemistry. Looking back now the majority of work as an undergraduate is an introduction to chemistry. The subject is so vast that you can only truly learn to understand aspects of it. I choose to be an Analytical Chemist which means that I did my initial research on instrumentation which involved building instruments such as Mass Spectrometers in grad school. My courses in analytical chemistry, notably around separation techniques, are still applicable to me today in my function and are most important to me in my job.
I have recently completed Green Belt training in Six Sigma Operational Excellence. HETAC award a certificate in Process Engineering for this course. The course trains you in advanced project management skills through six sigma methodologies. Six sigma is used in companies all around the world from Toyota to Wyeth. Project management is integral to the success of any company as you must manage your projects effectively for them to complete in a timely manner and to successfully deliver the outputs from it. I would like to one day go back and complete a Masters in Business Administration.