The pandemic has undoubtedly been a turbulent time for jobs and careers, but one hard-working team is continuing to guide people on exciting educational adventures and new job paths.
If you are out of work at the moment or thinking about upskilling to begin a new career, the Adult Guidance and Information Service at Donegal ETB’s Further Education and Training Service is here to help.
Two people who are glad they reached out to the service are Una Tourish and Karl O’Kane.
Una (33) from Glenfin, unfortunately found herself unemployed at the beginning of the pandemic. She had a lot of experience in retail, but felt she lacked the qualifications to apply for her dream job in administration.
“One day I came across an ad on social media about Donegal ETB so I picked up the courage to ring the number and I spoke to Rose who was very supportive and got the wheels in motion,” Una tells Donegal Daily.
“From the moment I contacted Rose I felt great.”
Rose listened to Una’s ideas of what she wanted to achieve. The first step she recommended was for Una to do an online ECDL course. Then, Una had a meeting with Mairead McFadden to set her training career goals.
“With Mairead’s support, I decided to enhance my IT skills by doing the Multimedia Course in Donegal ETB. I am delighted to have got a place on this course, with access to a laptop to use while we are working remotely,” Una said.
Una is now enjoying training up in Microsoft and progressing through the programme.
“I will definitely be advising anyone like me that is considering a career change to contact Donegal ETB.
“They had faith in me even when I didn’t have.”
Karl O’Kane (24) is a former Donegal ETB student who used the Adult Guidance and Information Service on a number of occasions – to start on courses and to secure a job afterwards.
The Trentagh man is now enjoying working in Security at Tata Consultancy Services (formerly Pramerica) in Letterkenny.
Karl’s journey began shortly after he dropped out of college. He always had an interest in computing, but found himself wanting to learn the skills in a different way than the third-level pathway.
“I wasn’t sure what to do next until a family member suggested I should contact Donegal ETB,” Karl said.
“I told the Guidance Counsellor where I was at, what I wanted to do, they listened and gave me some suggestions.
“They helped me get into a Software Testing course, it was great. When I finished, my idea was to go into a Software Development course.”
“At the end of the Developer course we had a four week placement in Pramerica that helped me get my foot in the door and get more experience.”
After that, Karl was finding it hard to get past the interview stage of job applications. But he knew exactly where to go for help.
The Guidance Counsellors at Donegal ETB brought Karl through interview skills training, which involved mock interviews and preparing for key questions and points that would give him the best chance at securing a start. The training worked, and Karl succeeded in getting a role at Tata more than a year ago.
Students such as Una and Karl are keen to recommend the Adult Guidance and Information Service to anyone in need of any support on their education and training.
Staff are happy to listen, advise and offer impartial and confidential guidance and counselling to help people make the right decisions. Taking that first step can be easier that you think…
If you feel Donegal ETB’s Adult Guidance and Information Service can help steer you in the right direction, contact them on 074 91 78088, email firstname.lastname@example.org or complete this web form and they’ll get back to you: https://www.donegaletb.ie/further-education-training/adult-guidance/
These specific skills training courses are co-funded by the Government of Ireland and the European Social Fund.