What subjects did you take in school and how have these influenced your career path?
I completed my leaving certificate back 1990. I received a modest 6 honours and 2 passes. None of the subjects I studied in school had any bearing on my career choice and probably did not affect my development in the Gardaí. But they enforced the idea that I didn't want a conventional job in something like business or science.
I graduated from Templemore with a Diploma in Policing Studies and a Certificate in French Studies, which is very handy when a French tourist asks for directions! Although I enjoyed my school subjects, (I had a real passion for English, poetry and Shakespeare), none of them applied to criminal law. I expect there probably are no legal subjects still, and students have to attend college to learn about the law. I couldn't wait though, and started in Templemore less than 2 years after I left school.
What is your education to date?
I never went to College. I sat the Leaving Certificate in 1990 and did well enough to get accepted into Templemore and I was happy with that. I graduated from Templemore with a Diploma in Policing Studies and a Certificate in French Studies.
Since then I have completed many other courses to advance my policing skills including driving, firearms, self-defence and interviewing techniques.
What aspects of your education have proven most important for your job?
The training I have received in the job has been the most important. The courses I have attended include:
• Driving • Speed detection • Breath analysis (intoxyliser/alcometer).. • Emergencies and First Aid • Serious Collisions on motorways and in tunnels • Ethnic Minorities. • PULSE
Have you undertaken, or do you plan to undertake any further training as part of your job?
The course I have most recently completed is the 8 month Sergeant's Promotion Course. The course is followed by a day of exams in Law, Management and the Garda Code. I had not studied properly since my time in Templemore in 1994, so it was hard to get back to the books, but I did and I passed the Sergeant’s exam last year.