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 Mary Joyce from Department of Education and Skills to give some advice for people considering this job:


Mary Joyce

Secondary School Teacher

Department of Education and Skills


  Mary Joyce
Teaching as they say is a vocation, it is a job that requires patience and enthusiasm. If you are considering teaching you need to look beyond the holidays and think of the 9-4 Monday to Friday spent dealing with children or teenagers and the challenges which they might pose.

I would advise anyone thinking of teaching as a career to speak with Teachers and learn of their experiences, both positive and negative. I personally would encourage people to consider teaching as it is an extremely rewarding profession in terms of the interaction you get daily with young people and the colleagues you meet in the job.

The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with clever technology. They will often follow the latest developments in their chosen field, and prefer mentally stimulating environments.
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Job Seekers

Job seekers fall into many categories:

  • You may be entering the world of work for the first time
  • You may have many years of work experience under your belt
  • You may be one of thousands of people that have been made redundant or lost their job in the economic downturn or
  • You may want to change career direction, or be simply be looking for a better job

These all are reasons that prompt people to look at the labour market for job opportunities. In the current climate, finding the right job can be a challenging, exciting or even a daunting process, whatever your reason, a range of resources are available to you through, that are designed to assist you in making sound, informed decisions about your career.

Note: Use the links on this page to find the resources you need.

Self-assessment exercises: CareersPortal Career File

The Interest Profiler is a really useful assessment exercise. Completing the exercise will highlight what occupations would be most suited to you. It takes about 15 minutes to complete and will generate an eight page career interest report that is unique for you.

How do I complete the Interest Profiler?

To complete your personal Interest Profiler, start by signing up to and creating your on-line career file. This file can then be accessed from any machine anywhere. It will allow you to save up to 10 documents (e.g. CV, Cover Letter etc.) and complete a Personality Assessment in relation to what careers might suit you. You can also save Occupations of interest to you, details of related PLC and CAO courses that you think you would enjoy and also provides you with access to an array of useful information on study and career skills.

 To create your on-line file just click on the image below.



  Hint: Smart Futures

As I have previously mentioned, the year I graduated was a great one for electronic engineering students. All of my graduating class had at least two offers before we had sat our final exams. At the time I had the offer of either taking up a Process Engineering, Software, Test or Hardware Design Engineering position with four different companies.

I picked hardware because that was what I most interested after completing my Electronics degree. I chose a multi-national company, and my advice to any graduate would be to start your career with an international company. Many of these companies will have formal graduate training programs in place, with pre defined career opportunities in place. Learning in a well established, and well structured environment will be crucial to any engineer entering the workforce for the first time.

After 12 months I left this company to work as a test engineer. At the time I didn’t want to commit my career to hardware design. I left on very good terms with the promise that if it didn’t work out I should make contact again. After 12 months I decided that my initial choice was what I wanted to pursue, and I was soon working again at my first company. I was promoted to team leader for a small engineering team, and the opportunity presented itself to pursue a career in management, but I wanted to stick with an engineering role. Eventually I was promoted to a senior design engineering position where I continued to design power supplies up until 2006. This was a very exciting time for me, and professionally my career really advanced.

In 2006 an opportunity arose to join a small Irish company that was moving its headquarters from Dublin to Cork. This company was Excelsys Technologies. The role was to head up the Applications Engineering group. I met with the Managing Director, who had previously headed up European Operations for the first company I had worked for. I also knew some of the other staff, again having previously worked with them. We now have a concentrated group of very experienced engineers, designing some of the highest power density power supplies in our chosen market.

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