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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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Ejiro O'Hare Stratton, Clinical Nurse Manager 2
Ejiro O'Hare Stratton is a Clinical Nurse Manager 2 with the HSE working in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda in a supervisory role for Care Assistants. She holds a Certificate in Nursing Studies and has also received a Diploma in Management & Industrial Relations and a BA in Human Resource Management & Industrial Relations.
Economics, English, Maths, History, Biology, Art, BK, were the subjects I took. Biology stood to me for nursing but Economics and History also proved useful when I did my course in Human Resource Management and Industrial Relations.
Human Resource Management & Industrial Relations and Human Development are all relevant to my current work. The employee relations aspect is particularly important and organisational behaviour.
I plan to complete a masters in Employee Relations. I have done a year already but have taken some time out due to family circumstances. Another thing I would love to do is to do a course in employment law.