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 McGarrigle from CRH plc to give some advice for people considering this job:

Elaine McGarrigle

Mechanical Engineer

CRH plc

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Elaine McGarrigle

The most important skill that a person in my position can have is communication.

One needs to be able to communicate effectively with people of all levels in order to do a days work. I think that this is the most important quality, to be able to fit in well with people, everyone from the operators to the senior management, one needs to be able to read them and how best to communicate with them.

An interest in basic engineering and in the heavy machine industry.

It is important to realise that working as a mechanical engineer in Irish Cement does not generally involve sitting at your desk all day. It involves alot of hands on, on-site work so a person needs to be prepared to get their hands dirty.

Another quality that is important is to be willing to learn. Even after a number of years in college, one needs to be eager to learn the ins and outs of a new environment; how cement is made, what equipment is involved, what generally goes wrong and how it is fixed.

Everyone will help and teach you but you need to open your mind and be prepared to take it all in.

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Naturalist?
Naturalist
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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Leaving Cert 2017

What Next?

The period of time between receipt of Leaving Cert results and embarking on the next stage of life is an exciting time for a young person. Feelings of hope and expectation are followed by relief, joy and sometimes disappointment when the results arrive and CAO offers are made.

It can be a stressful time for all concerned, including parents, who more than anything, will want to support their child as they navigate these crucial weeks.

Apart from an anxious wait for exam results, there can be other uncertainties...

  • What way will the points go this year? 
  • Will I secure my college place? 
  • What will my financial commitments look like for the next few years? 
  • Will I be moving away from home? 
  • If so how will I secure the right accommodation?  
  • If there’s disappointment and a sense of failure, what is the best way to support the young person as they work through these feelings? 

This is one of the major life transitions for any family, so a little preparation can help things move along more smoothly.

Here, we address the main issues confronting parents and students over the coming weeks and answer the most frequently asked questions about Leaving Cert Results and CAO offers.

So the Leaving Cert is well and truly over. What happens next?

One of the tricky aspects of these few weeks, is that there are a number of overlapping processes, interdependent decisions to be made and deadlines to be met as follows:

  1. Leaving Cert Results
  2. The Appeals Process
  3. CAO offers and acceptances
  4. Money Matters - Grant Applications; Accommodation arrangements etc.
  5. Other Options - Contingency plans; Repeat Leaving Cert; PLC (Post Leaving Cert Courses); UCAS clearing; Gap year and Study Abroad options.

Several issues can arise – all at the same time, and sometimes with the best will in the world it may be difficult to synchronise and juggle important dates, deadlines, results, appeals, offers, changes of plan and other arrangements, along with regular family commitments.

With these concerns in mind our Leaving Cert – What Next menu items address some of the main concerns that arise at this important time and offer practical information and advice.

Advice from parents that have been through the process

Be prepared. Be attentive to important dates, deadlines, financial outgoings and processes. Ensure that the atmosphere at home is low-key and upbeat. Be certain that important information comes from a reliable source such as The IGC / NPC HELPLINE 1800 265165

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