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 Paul Dowling from Teagasc to give some advice for people considering this job:

Paul Dowling

Horticulturist

Teagasc

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Paul Dowling
Ideally, try and get a job in the industry for a summer, or get a bit of experience before you go into it. You have to be happy with working outside, and doing physical work. If you are not prepared to work hard or are looking for a soft job, don't go into Landscaping. Design is very sexy at the moment, everyone wants to be a designer, a Landscape Designer. It's different on the ground, you have to be out there on sites in all weather and you have to make sure projects are managed well and you're able to muck in with everyone else. Biology is most important for anyone going into Horticulture or Landscaping as it covers propagation and helps with the identification of plant names, species and families through the universal use of Latin. Chemistry is also helpful as the use of various chemicals is a constant in horticulture. The chemical content and dangers of fertilizers, herbicides and insecticides in use in Amenity Horticulture needs to be understood anyone going into this business. Geography would be a relevant subject as well. Also, the simple things like having a full, clean driving licence, which can make you a lot more employable if you are trying for a job with a Landscape Conractor. This indicates that you are more mobile and can also drive a company van if needed. Be sure you're happy with the outdoor life. Having taken a Horticulture course will give you an advantage. However, it's possible to take a job first and study later, e.g. in IT Blanchardstown it is possible to study at night. I think you cannot beat doing the Diploma Course in the National Botanic Gardens because it is a good practical course which also covers all the theory and is invaluable for gaining plant knowledge.
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Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their best operating under supervisors who give clear guidelines, and performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.

They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
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Community Employment

Community Employment (CE) is an employment programme which helps long-term unemployed (at least six months) people to re-enter the workforce by breaking their experience of unemployment through a return to work routine.

The CE programme aims to enhance and develop both technical and personal skills which can then be used in the workplace. The CE programme is generally sponsored by groups wishing to benefit the local community, namely voluntary organisations and public bodies involved in not-for-profit activities. The training provided through Community Employment is delivered within a Quality Assurance framework.

See details of recognised QQI Awards and qualifications which can be achieved and which lead to major awards on the National Framework of Qualifications. A CE applicant who needs childcare in order to take up a place in a CE schemes is eligible for a CE childcare place.

For further detail in relation to how CE childcare places are managed please contact your CE Sponsor or click here.

To participate in the CE programme, you must: Register at your local Employment Services Office and Meet certain Eligibility Criteria.The Department provides financial support in the form of Allowances and Funding to assist with the programme, for example participant wages, supervisor grants, materials grants, and specific skills training grants.

For further information click here

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