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 Elaine MacDonald from St. Michael's House to give some advice for people considering this job:

Elaine MacDonald

Psychologist - Clinical

St. Michael's House

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Elaine MacDonald

Make sure you are willing to go the full distance in terms of the time needed to train as a Clinical Psychologist – it’s typically at least six years academic study, and invariably this period is interspersed with work in a relevant field.

Do be as confident as you can that you’re happy being a “listener” and “observer”, as you will spend significant amounts of time in your work life as a Clinical Psychologist being in this role, as well as being in the “do-er” role and being in the limelight.

To have a good ‘fit’ with this career you’ll need to be happy working with people – as individuals on a one to one basis, with groups (e.g. families), and as part of a team in the workplace.

You need to have a good attention to detail as the job needs good observation skills, record keeping, and organisation skills.

Be prepared for learning and self-development to be on-going for the whole of your career because, as a Clinical Psychologist, you’ll be learning and using techniques and intervention approaches that are being constantly developed, and be working in accordance with policies and laws that are also constantly evolving.

The last piece of advice I’d give to someone considering this job is to be as sure as you can that you feel comfortable and even excited at the prospect of your career revolving around people and groups with all the varied, diverse, and unpredictable rewards and challenges that this brings!

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Administrative
Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their best operating under supervisors who give clear guidelines, and performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.

They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
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Third Secretary Dept. of Foreign Affairs and Trade

"I oversee the provision of consular and passport services to Irish holidaymakers and residents in Spain and Tunisia." Caitlin Higgins, Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade / Civil Service. 

Following the completion of a PhD in History in Trinity College Dublin, I joined the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in 2012, prior to Ireland’s EU Presidency.

My first role was in Europe Division, where I worked on a range of policy issues relating to Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia.

Anglo Irish Division

I subsequently moved to the Department’s Anglo Irish Division, where my duties included support for organisations involved in reconciliation work on the island of Ireland. I was also involved in planning for upcoming official commemorations of the 1916 Easter Rising.

In mid-2015 I was assigned to the Irish Embassy in Madrid, which is also accredited to Tunisia. Madrid is Ireland’s busiest consular mission, with around 1.3 million visits by Irish people to Spain each year. It deals with over 25% of consular cases involving Irish people worldwide.

In my role as Consul, I oversee the provision of consular and passport services to Irish holidaymakers and residents in Spain and Tunisia. My roles in the Department to date have been interesting and varied. I would certainly recommend it to any graduate who is considering their future options.

gradpublicjobs.ie

Article by: Caitlin Higgins