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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 Maria O'Neill from STEPS to give some advice for people considering this job:
If you like working with others, and like problem solving then its definitely worth considering. Do you ever look at a bridge/skyscraper etc. and wonder how they did that? Or better still, are you looking at the way the road at home is laid out and thinking if they had of done something differently it would have been better.
Engineering is not a career people think about and say its helping people, but in many ways it is rewarding and just as much about helping people. Engineers design things used everyday that help people get to work, provide clean water, provide sewerage systems, care for the environment....
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Justine McCosh, Accountant
Justine is from New Zealand and completed her secondary education and primary degree there. She moved to London and worked in the Banking sector for a while. She then studied to become a Chartered Management Accountant (CIMA), and after moving to Dublin took up a position in the ESB.
I attended secondary school in New Zealand and I took a variety of subjects, but I only took one year of Accounting and Economics. Therefore doing these at Stage One at University was more difficult than it would have been if I had taken finance subjects the whole way through school.
I think in hindsight it would have been easier if I did finance subjects throughout school, but on the other hand, taking a variety of subjects in school is a good way to see where your interests and strengths lie.
As long as you are dedicated and want to learn something, there is no reason why you can't study it even if you have no previous experience in the subject.
I went to secondary school in New Zealand, and then onto University there, where I did a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Business Administration.
When I was working in an Investment Bank, quite a few years later, I decided to do my CIMA qualification. I was exempt from the 'Foundation Level' because of my degree, so it took me 3 years to complete, whilst working full time.
CIMA has been the most important educational course for my career advancement. It opened lots of doors for me, both in my previous job, and when it came to searching for my current job. And I found that what you were learning could be put into practice in your daily work as you were studying, so it was very practical.
Learning and Development is actively encouraged at the ESB. Currently, I am planning on doing a few one day courses this year to help broaden my knowledge on the new things I am learning at work. In the future, I may decide to do another diploma or degree.