Connect with us


Progression from PLC to colleges and universities



Each year many students secure places on their dream course through the CAO, not based on their Leaving Cert points but rather using the results they have achieved by completing a Post Leaving Cert (PLC) course in a College of Further Education & Training (FET).

In 2020, 12,556 applicants to CAO for places in colleges and universities around the country presented with QQI/FET (or FETAC) qualifications with over 4,000 of such applicants being offered by CAO in early August. A quota of places (up to 10%) is reserved on many CAO courses for students applying on the bases of the QQI/FET points achieved in exams after completing one year of a PLC. There are also extensive options for graduates of PLC courses to apply for college/university places in the UK through UCAS, and throughout Europe. In all cases, places are offered on a competitive basis.


While progression routes are not available into every course on CAO, the number of pathways is increasing each year. Progression is not guaranteed but doing as well as possible in QQI/FETAC exams gives you a great chance to secure a place on a Level 6, 7 or 8 course by applying to CAO once you have completed the course. The other thing you need to check is the entry requirements for QQI/FETAC applicants. In some cases applicants can apply from any PLC course while there are a number of CAO courses that will look for a certain number of distinctions and require that you have completed specific PLC courses and modules.


There are several ways to check out the PLC options available, the progression routes available and the CAO entry requirements for QQI/FETAC applicants. To check out the extensive range of PLC courses available nationwide, check out To explore what is available more locally, check out your local Education and Training Board (ETB) and in the case of Kerry students make sure to check out You will find the most up to date information about QQI/FETAC progression routes in that section of You can search using the code of the PLC course you are considering and also search using code for the CAO course that you are interested in progressing onto. Remember not all CAO courses have reserved places from QQI/FET applicants, but many do! You will find a really helpful resource on and you can check the college websites for more information on entry requirements and the number of places available.

These attractive progression routes are not the only reason why doing a PLC is a great idea. Entry to the programmes is not based on Leaving Cert points. You get a great foundation in your chosen area before you commit to three or four years of study, making the first year of Higher Education more manageable as you gain valuable work experience and in many cases you can access PLC courses very close to home. If you haven’t done so already you can apply now directly to the individual FET college by logging on to their website. Places are limited and are filled on a first come, first served basis, so apply sooner rather than later to avoid disappointment.

​​​​​​​Niamh Dwyer is a Guidance Counsellor in Scoil Phobail Sliabh Luachra, Rathmore, and Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors. She is also a Career Consultant. For details see or follow @mycareerplan on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. 

Continue Reading


Do facial treatments hurt?

It can be difficult to book your first facial, as you aren’t sure what your skin needs or what’s involved, but don’t worry, as that’s our job to make it […]




It can be difficult to book your first facial, as you aren’t sure what your skin needs or what’s involved, but don’t worry, as that’s our job to make it an easy process.

One of the most asked questions I get asked is do facials hurt? The short answer is no, but I have to admit it depends on your skin type and what is required. Squeezing black heads isn’t the most comfortable moment during a facial, but we always have the skin well prepared, exfoliated and softened, and use steam to open the pores. Mostly a facial is super relaxing and comfortable.

Summer weather tends to bring with it oily skin and breakouts, but it’s often less acne prone in the winter. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be getting regular facials throughout the year however. The best way to see the benefits of a facial is to get them consistently. A good facial will have the products tailored to your skin type.

You have nothing to loose but excess oil and dead skin cells. I have a feeling men are more sensitive than women as they always ask about the pain involved first!

Give me a call to book in or if you’ve any other questions ring 064 6632966.

Continue Reading


The ultimate Quest makes a welcome return to Killarney

Adventure race enthusiasts from around the country gathered in Killarney on Saturday for the much anticipated return of Quest Killarney. Last held in 2019, this year’s event attracted over 2,500 […]




Adventure race enthusiasts from around the country gathered in Killarney on Saturday for the much anticipated return of Quest Killarney.

Last held in 2019, this year’s event attracted over 2,500 participants who signed up to run, cycle and kayak their way around some of the most iconic scenery in the country.

Gap of Dunloe, Ladies View, Mangerton Mountain and Torc Waterfall were just some of the stunning locations along five routes of varying distances: 25km, 55km, 66km (run and cycle only), 75km, and 83km. The choice of routes allowed everyone from beginners to those with more experience to take part, as well as taking into account varying post-lockdown fitness levels!

Taking part this year were a couple of popular first-timers. Fresh from RTÉ’s Hell Week was Kerry’s own viral Instagrammer Tadgh Fleming who completed the 55k Sport Route. A fresh looking Tadgh said at the finish that Quest Killarney was, “Nothing like Hell Week, a bit harder I think! But really enjoyed it, I’d highly recommend it, going for the Pro next time!”

Incorporating Quest Killarney on her transformative weight loss journey was an elated Patricia Lewis (Trisha Transformations) who completed the 27km Challenge route, and had this to say as she crossed the finish line: “Anyone who’s thinking about doing it, don’t even hesitate, register now!”

Now on its tenth event, Quest Killarney, the world’s biggest adventure race, enjoys a growing reputation as a challenging race with a friendly atmosphere. It is also popular with visitors and participants alike as they are introduced to the stunning natural charm of Killarney’s glorious lakes and imposing mountains.

First home in the 83km Expert route was Niall Davis in a time of 04:17:55. In second place was Sebastien Giraud (04:32:47), and in third was Garry Carroll (04:34:24).
Kerry’s own Ellen Vitting (based in Kenmare) and RTÉ Hell Week finalist, was the first female home in 05:02:07. In second position was Laura O’Driscoll (05:18:43), in third position was Eimear O’Brien (05:27:13).

Overall male winner in the 73km Pro route was Dwayne Flynn (03:48:47) and overall female winner was Siobhan Dineen (04:08:37). Overall winners in the 55km ‘Sport’ route were Kevin McGuinness (02:13:08) in the men’s race and Orlaith Smith (02:34:45) in the women’s race. Winners of the 65km ‘Dual’ route were men’s race Liam Aherne (02:40:40) and women’s race Emer Monaghan (03:09:49). Winners of the 27km ‘Challenge’ route were Larry Stapleton for the men (01:13:27) and Niamh Hickey for the women (01:21:08).

Competitors were treated to hot food and music at the finish line, with prize-giving at The Gleneagle Hotel whose significant sponsorship and exceptional support continues to contribute to a positive day for everyone.

“We are thrilled that Quest Killarney has once again proven so popular with adventurers who are looking for a new challenge,” Oliver Kirwan, Race Organiser, said.

“Killarney itself is a great draw to visitors both from Kerry and further afield, introducing new people every year to its inspirational terrain. We are very much looking forward to preparing for 2023 as we encourage more people to discover their next adventure and put themselves to the Quest! We are grateful to everyone who gave us support and volunteered their time. We’d like to thank our main event sponsors Volvo and The Gleneagle Hotel, and also the contribution of our event partners All Real, Gnarly Peaks, Nuasan and MCG Kayaks.”

Organisers Elite Event Management are delighted to announce their event dates for 2023: Quest Kenmare on 11 March 2023, Quest Glendalough on 1 April 2023, Quest Lough Derg on 9 September 2023, and Quest Killarney on 7 October 2023.

For more information on next year’s events please visit

Continue Reading


Last News