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Killarney Celtic boss hails ‘brave’ players

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KILLARNEY CELTIC have booked their place in the last 16 of the FAI Junior Cup following a remarkable victory over Newmarket Celtic in Clare on Sunday.

Kerry teams seldom make it beyond the last 32 in junior soccer’s showpiece competition (Celtic last made it this far thirty years ago) and manager Brian Spillane believes his players’ willingness to play possession football was pivotal to their success. “When you come up against the top teams you have to be brave,” he said.

“You have to be able to play soccer. When it was 2-2 we were keeping the ball, we were working triangles, and even when we went 3-2 up with four minutes to go we were still holding onto the ball. There was loads of confidence in the team. We were very brave.”

In a pulsating tie that ebbed and flowed, the boys from Killarney showed great character to come from behind and eventually overcome very strong and highly fancied opposition in Clare champions Newmarket. Spillane certainly wasn’t thrilled when their name came out of the hat. “Before the draw was made Newmarket were one of the teams I just didn’t want to play. Especially away from home – I don’t think they had been beaten there in three years – so I knew it’d be a tough task.”

Indeed Celtic were 11/2 outsiders to prevail on the day and any brave Killarney punters would have feared the worst when Newmarket took a first half lead through Paddy Purcell, the former League of Ireland centre half heading home from a corner.

Celtic responded well, however, and they found themselves on level terms shortly after, last season’s Player of the Year Wayne Sparling latching on to Cathal O’Shea’s pass before firing coolly beyond the home keeper.

It didn’t take long for Sparling to double his tally. This time Gary Keane provided the assist for the talented forward who broke free of the Newmarket defence and lobbed the keeper from outside the box.

A controversial incident ten minutes before half time led to a double red card when Celtic striker Cathal O’Shea apparently got involved in a bust up of sorts with a Newmarket defender. Both players received their marching orders so Celtic will have to plan for the next round without O’Shea and also left back Brendan Falvey who broke his hand during the game.

Confidence was high after the restart but Celtic suffered a major setback on the hour mark when Newmarket were awarded a questionable penalty. Star striker Eoin Hayes duly converted and the sides were level once more.

With the game deadlocked at 2-2 and the final whistle fast approaching it appeared as though extra time was on the cards – but there was still time for one final twist.
Substitute Conor Randall’s corner was cleared but the ball made its way back out to him on the wing. At the second time of asking his cross found right back Chris O’Leary who rose highest to head Celtic into the last 16 and send the travelling support into raptures.

Spillane felt those away fans were crucial. “They made a big difference. There were a lot of old heads on the sideline, guys like Frankie Roberts, the two Huggards, Ray Hoctor, Pat O’Neill, Karl McMahon, Noel Brosnan… All the players have huge respect for these fellas and when you see them on the line it raises it another level. Altogether there were about eighty supporters. It was fantastic.”

Celtic can now look forward to the draw for the last 16 and the manager is clear on what they want. “We’ll be looking for a home draw and then try to get to a quarter final,” Spillane said. “The way we’re playing this year and the confidence we have at the moment it’s going to take a good team to knock us out.”

Celtic (4-2-3-1): Roy Kelliher; Chris O’Leary, Jamie Spillane, John McDonagh, Brendan Falvey; Gary Keane, Pa McGrath; Wayne Sparling, Matt Keane, Stephen Hayes; Cathal O’Shea. Subs: Peter McCarthy (for Falvey), Conor Randall (for McGrath), Connall Murphy (for Sparling).

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Possible return to campus for college students

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By Niamh Dwyer, Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors

The announcement by the Department of Education this week, that the Leaving Cert results will be issued on Friday, September 3, was followed by confirmation from the Central Applications Office that CAO Round 1 offers will be issued online, four days later on Tuesday, September 7 at 2pm.

This is about three weeks later than normal, although it is earlier than the 2020 dates. Coinciding with the release of these dates comes the news from Minister for Further and Higher Education, Simon Harris, that it is the priority of Government to get college students back on campus for the 2021/2022 academic year. Because of the later issue of Leaving Cert results and CAO offers, this means that First Year students will start college a couple of weeks later than those who are returning to college in Second, Third and Fourth Year.

From the point of social distancing, the staggered start may be an advantage, as we will still be living with certain restrictions due to COVID-19. There are a number of contributing factors what will influence a safe and successful return to the college campus for students according to Minister Harris. They include the roll-out and take-up of vaccinations in the college-age cohort by September, the use of rapid testing on campus which has been run as a pilot in several universities this year, and a varied approach to face-to-face lectures. It is hoped that smaller classes, practicals and tutorials can be operated as before with social distancing while the larger lectures may need to be facilitated using a blended approach. It is also felt that if cafés, restaurants and bars are open everywhere else, there is no reason why they can’t open on campus. This of course is all based on vaccinations and public health guidelines.

ACCOMMODATION

A big concern for First Year students following the announcements is the fact that they will be looking for accommodation later than all other students. This is an issue every single year because when CAO offers are issued, many students get offers for colleges in locations where they have not secured accommodation. Naturally it is of particular concern to rural students and mirrors a greater societal shortage of accommodation. Minister Harris has also stated that he is bringing a proposal to Cabinet in the coming weeks to implement legislation which means that the owners of purpose-built student accommodation will only be allowed to charge rents a month in advance rather than insisting on payment of rent for half of the college year, something which has put enormous strain on students and their families over the years.
So, while any kind of certainty surrounding a return to ‘normal’ college life isn’t possible, it is both hopeful and exciting for new and returning college students to be able to look forward to the next college year with the prospect of getting to enjoy a real college experience and all that has to offer.

WEBINAR

I will be hosting a free webinar for Leaving Cert parents on June 16 at 7pm on ‘How to help your son/daughter with CAO Change of Mind and other career options’ ahead of the CAO deadline on July 1. 

To register see links on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram: @mycareerplan or email me on info@mycareerplan.ie. 

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 www.mycareerplan.ie or follow @mycareerplan on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

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Deadline for health and well-being fest fast approaching

Friday June 25, the closing date to register an interest in hosting an activity or event during the 2021 Kerry Mental Health and Well-being Fest, is fast approaching. This year’s #KerryMHWFest will run from October 9 to 16. It is held annually to highlight World Mental Health Day on October 10. Organised by an interagency […]

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Friday June 25, the closing date to register an interest in hosting an activity or event during the 2021 Kerry Mental Health and Well-being Fest, is fast approaching.

This year’s #KerryMHWFest will run from October 9 to 16. It is held annually to highlight World Mental Health Day on October 10.

Organised by an interagency steering group, the key focus of the Kerry Mental Health and Well-being Fest is to promote mental health and well-being in Kerry through a fun and interactive programme of events.

“The Kerry Mental Health and Well-being Fest aims to create awareness of, and schedule events that empower people to engage with the Five Ways to Well-being – Connect | Give | Take Notice | Keep Learning | Be Active – as well as raising awareness of the available supports and services in the county,” Chair of the Steering Committee, Donagh Hennebry, said.

“The Fest has a wide reach across Kerry and we want to continue to build on its success in 2021. But we can’t do this without you! We are inviting anyone who is interested in helping us achieve our goal, by hosting an event(s) during #KerryMHWFest, to register online as soon as possible.”

The organising committee is a collaboration between Connecting for Life Kerry, Healthy Kerry, Kerry County Council, the HSE, NEWKD, SKDP, Kerry Mental Health Association, Jigsaw Kerry, Munster Technological University/Kerry, and Kerry Volunteer Centre.

To register your interest to host an event for the 2021 Kerry Mental Health and Well-being Fest, visit www.healthykerry.ie before close of business on Friday, June 25.

For more information about registration, promotion, or the Fest in general, please contact the interagency steering group at: kerrymhwfest20@gmail.com.

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Free and subsidised higher education courses for Kerry

  11 free and subsidised higher education places have been announced for Kerry under the Springboard+ 2021 and Human Capital Initiative (HCI) Pillar 1 initiatives. The courses, which open for applications today (Wednesday), will run at Munster Technological University Kerry. The courses on offer include a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy Management & Practice, a Certificate in […]

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11 free and subsidised higher education places have been announced for Kerry under the Springboard+ 2021 and Human Capital Initiative (HCI) Pillar 1 initiatives. The courses, which open for applications today (Wednesday), will run at Munster Technological University Kerry.

The courses on offer include a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy Management & Practice, a Certificate in Retail Food Service Operations and a Postgraduate Diploma in Bioeconomy with Business.

Over 10,000 places are available across both programmes nationwide in 2021.

Springboard+ provides free courses for people who are unemployed, people who have taken time out of work or education to raise their families or care for loved ones, or people who want to upskill. Now in its 10th year, over 75,000 people have benefited from Springboard+ to date.

Courses under the HCI Pillar 1 programme are aimed at graduates and offer incentivised places for them to reskill in areas of skills shortage and emerging technologies. These are being run alongside, and complementary to, the Springboard+ offerings.

For those in employment, the Government will fund 90% of the cost of a Springboard+ or HCI Pillar 1 course. The programmes are managed by the Higher Education Authority on behalf of the Department of Education and Skills.

Launching the programme, Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris, TD said, “As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, we will need to ensure that people have the skills they need”.

Helpline

Candidates who wish to participate will find full details on the approved courses on www.springboardcourses.ie. Experienced guidance counsellors will be available to advise potential Springboard+ and HCI Pillar 1 participants on their options on the freephone Springboard+ helpline: 1800 303 523. The helpline is open from 9.30am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday.

 

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