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 Jonathan Pugsley from Sustainable Energy Authority to give some advice for people considering this job:

Jonathan Pugsley

Energy Manager

Sustainable Energy Authority

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Jonathan Pugsley

Communication and team skills are probably the most important aspect overlooked.

In energy management, it is not I that saves the energy, but often it is folks on the ground using the equipment.

It is the energy managers job to educate by communication, the importance of doing the right things, savings then come as a result.


Not surprisingly, some aspect of the natural sciences will run through the Naturalists interests - from ecological awareness to nutrition and health. People with an interest in horticulture, land usage and farming (including fish) are Naturalists.

Some Naturalists focus on animals rather than plants, and may enjoy working with, training, caring for, or simply herding them. Other Naturalists will prefer working with the end result of nature's produce - the food produced from plants and animals. Naturalists like solving problems with solutions that show some sensitivity to the environmental impact of what they do. They like to see practical results, and prefer action to talking and discussing.
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New Laboratory Apprenticeship

Three days in work, two days studying and a salary

New Laboratory Apprenticeship

Following a 2015 Expert Group on Future Skills Needs report there is clear evidence of a skills shortage within the BioPharmaChem sector. BioPharmaChem Ireland, the business association within Ibec representing the biopharma and chemical sectors, surveyed their Membership and identified that recruitment and retention of skilled quality and laboratory personnel was at an all-time low.

An industry-led consortium was established who worked closely with SOLAS, the Further Education and Training Authority and the Institute of Technology, Tallaght to develop, in close alignment to the needs of the Irish BioPharmaChem sector, two new and bespoke Laboratory Apprenticeship programmes.

The Laboratory Apprenticeships are, “earn while you learn” higher certificate and degree programmes that combine on the job training (3 days a week) with academic study (2 days a week).

These two and three-year programmes lead to a Level 6 Higher Certificate in Science - Laboratory Technician and Level 7 Ordinary Bachelor of Science Degree – Laboratory Analyst from your local Institute of Technology and are suitable for those, who currently have at a minimum a Level 5, and for those who wish to develop a career in the laboratory environment of the Biopharmaceutical, Pharmaceutical, Chemical Manufacturing, Food, Medical Devices and Independent Testing Laboratories.

With the support of leading professionals and companies the apprentice will learn the skills, knowledge and behaviours necessary for a successful career in a laboratory environment, while earning a salary, they will also have the opportunity to study in a leading Institute of Technology to gain a nationally recognised qualification.

Three days in work, two days studying and a salary.  The perfect combination for a successful career in a laboratory and beyond.

These apprenticeships will add to the pool of talented individuals available for industry to draw from. Educated, experience and trained. The perfect solution for solving industry’s skills shortage and recruitment problems.

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