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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 Jason Ruane from Intel to give some advice for people considering this job:
Possibly useful qualities/interests:
A predisposition towards technical problems, such as puzzles or machinery. An interest in the nature of how things work, such as the desire to disassemble machinery/gadgetry to unlock its inner workings.
An inventive side; one who uses the parts of other gadgets, to make a new personalised gadget. Interested in high tech gear: gadgetry of all forms.
A capacity to learn processes for oneself e.g. seeing a puzzle solved and then repeating it.
Skills: Technical subjects such as Maths or electronics. Programming is very accessible to anyone with a basic home PC and some internet connection so try it out and see if you like it.
Values: If you value the solving of an intricate, convoluted problem, for it's own sake and find that rewarding, then any engineering job will come easily.
Education: Firm basis in Maths and the sciences. People are hired into engineering positions here from backgrounds such as science and computing primarily.
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|Drogheda Institute of Further Education|
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Afra Ronayne, Mechanical Engineer
Afra enjoyed Physics and Maths in her Leaving cert and went on to do Mechanical Engineering in University College Dublin. She followed up on an advertisement for jobs on the College noticeboard and was successful in getting a job with ESBI.
In school apart from the three basics of English, Irish and Maths I also took German, Accounting, Physics and Chemistry. Although Physics and Chemistry were not needed to get into the engineering course it was beneficial to have them as we had to take these subjects in first year.
However, I did not do technical drawing so I had to start this from scratch in first year of college so most people have at least one subject that they have never done before.
Since finishing secondary school my main education to date has been my Mechanical Engineering Degree in UCD. However I have continued my education, in both technical and non-technical areas, throughout my professional career through both on the job training and also external training courses.
For me I found the fact that I enjoyed subjects like maths, physics and chemistry very important for my career choice as a Mechanical Engineer. It also helped that I had good teachers for these subjects and therefore did well in them in my Leaving Cert.
However the most useful thing is the technique you learn during your four year engineering degree on how to approach and analyse problems and take logical steps to solve the problems. This gives you the skills and confidence to undertake different types of challenges.
I have attended a number of both in-house and external training courses in ESBI which are certified by Engineers Ireland as CPD (Continuing Professional Development) courses. These will be of huge benefit to me when applying for chartership.
I now also have the opportunity through my job at ESBI to do a Diploma in Project Management in Trinity College which started in October.