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 Ita Heffernan from Health Service Executive to give some advice for people considering this job:

Mary Ita Heffernan

Social Worker

Health Service Executive

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Mary Ita Heffernan

Whilst in secondary school, I changed my mind many a time regarding the career path I wanted to pursue! I always knew that I wanted to work with people but was unsure about the profession which would most suit my interests and skills in this regard.

While in school, I definitely found that being unsure about the type or area of work you want to pursue is a very difficult and confusing position to be in, especially given the array of career choices now available and the pressure one feels in trying to make one’s mind up.

To this end, I would strongly advise anybody in this position to research courses and job descriptions well in order to make the most informed decision possible at that time in your life. 

I recommend one tries to gain as much work experience as possible as it will provide you with valuable insight into your skills, ability, likes/dislikes for certain areas of employment!!!!

Also I would research the courses and job areas as much as possible so that you can make an informed decision regarding your choices. If you can't gain enough information in school, contact the college directly or arrange to talk to somebody who facilitates the course. In particular, it would be really valuable to talk to somebody in the profession to gain a realistic and practical insight into the job.

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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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Is engineering for me?

Are you naturally curious about how things work? Love solving problems? Enjoy making, breaking or designing things? If you answered yes, engineering might be right for you.

Is engineering for me?

Are you naturally curious about how things work? Love solving problems? Enjoy making, breaking or designing things? If you answered yes, engineering might be right for you.

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STEPS was established in 2000 to encourage primary and post primary students to explore the world of science and engineering. The STEPS programme encourages primary and post-primary students to explore the world of science, technology, engineering and mathematics while also promoting engineering as a career choice. The value of the programme has been formally recognised by Government and is a key element of the national Discover Science & Engineering programme. It is managed by Engineers Ireland and is supported by the Department of Education & Science, Forfás and a number of major engineering employers.

The aims of the Engineers Ireland STEPS programme are:

  • Raise awareness among students about engineering as a career choice
  • Encourage a positive attitude towards careers in engineering, science and technology
  • Promote a greater understanding of the role/contribution of engineering in society and how engineering is relevant to our everyday lives
  • Highlight the advantages, diversity, opportunities and excellent rewards offered by a career in the engineering profession