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Take time to consider the options: career advice Guidance Counsellor Niamh Dwyer

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At this time of year many Third and Fourth Year students are considering their options for Senior Cycle. Some thought and proper research at this stage paves the way for lots of opportunities for progression onto college courses, apprenticeships, training programmes and the workplace in the future. The main choices to consider are Transition Year, Leaving Cert Applied and the traditional Leaving Cert.

 

Transition Year

There are lots of benefits to choosing TY. It gives students lots of opportunities to develop new skills personally and in terms of the world of work. It gives a breather from constant academic work and means that you are a year older (and hopefully wiser!) leaving school. Most schools offer subject sampling which is a big help when making subject choices for Fifth and Sixth Year. Students are encouraged to engage in activities that move them outside of their comfort zone, allowing them to take on more responsibility and leadership thus gaining more independence. One of the biggest attractions for students is work experience which is a really valuable way of getting a sense of the workplace and an idea if a particular job suits you or not. The TY programme varies in each school so check out the opportunities in your school.

Leaving Certificate Applied Programme

For students who are interested in more practical learning and hands-on work the LCA is the ideal option. It is a two year stand-alone programme which focuses on equipping students with work-based skills and knowledge while assessing in a more continuous way. Work experience is an integral part of the programme, usually offered on one day of the school week. While students who do LCA can’t apply directly through CAO from Leaving Cert, most other career paths are open to them, including apprenticeships, traineeships and Post Leaving Courses (PLCs) which once completed progress onto institutes of technology and universities.

Traditional Leaving Certificate

Moving into the final two years in secondary school requires students to make subject choices that suit them and will enable them to progress in career areas they may be interested in. That said, it is perfectly normal for 15 and 16-year-olds to not know what they want to do after school. Students will generally take seven subjects for Leaving Cert – Irish, English and Maths, which are compulsory unless you have a language exemption, and then four optional subjects chosen from those which are offered in the school. If on offer in the school, some students may also opt for Leaving Cert Vocational Programme (LCVP), a subject which focuses on enterprise education and preparation for the world of work.

What to consider when choosing optional subjects

First, think about the subjects you like and what you are good at. Secondly, if you do have an idea of the general career areas you would like to go into after school check out what subjects might be required for the colleges, courses or careers that you are interested in. Finally, if you really don’t have an idea of what you want to do after school then choose a broad range of subjects so you keep as many options open as you can. Consider taking one option from the following: language, science, business subject, a practical or humanities based subject.

Resources to help

Talking to your guidance counsellor in school is a huge help as he/she will be able to explore your interests, strengths, aptitudes and past performance in subjects with you as well as answer any questions you have about requirements for courses and colleges. If you want to check out the content of any of the Leaving Cert subjects you are considering go to www.careersportal.ie/school/subjectexplorer. To check any subject requirements have a look at the Undergraduate section of the college websites and there is also a very useful subject requirement module on www.qualifax.ie.

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Fossa’s marathon man competes in Vienna

By Sean Moriarty They are a familiar sight on training sessions out the Fossa way, but last weekend two Killarney marathon runners made themselves known in Vienna, Austria. Tony Harty (Fossa) and Seamus Murphy (Milltown and Glencar) train together and travel together to international marathons all over the world. On Sunday they contested the Vienna Marathon […]

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By Sean Moriarty

They are a familiar sight on training sessions out the Fossa way, but last weekend two Killarney marathon runners made themselves known in Vienna, Austria.

Tony Harty (Fossa) and Seamus Murphy (Milltown and Glencar) train together and travel together to international marathons all over the world.

On Sunday they contested the Vienna Marathon with Tony recording a personal-best time of 2hrs and 45mins. He finished second in the Over 45 category and 27th overall, while Tony completed the course in 3hrs and 3mins.

“You won’t see one of us without the other,” said Tony.

Niall Thompson of Killorglin was also competing in the event.

Tony is a member of the well-known Harty family of Waterford. His two brothers Phillip and William and sister Rebecca all raced for Ireland.

Tony took up running later than his siblings and contested his first marathon in 2015 when was 39-years-old.

Now 45 he cannot stop running and takes in at least two overseas marathons every year as well as Irish and local events.

“It is all part of the experience,” he told the Killarney Advertiser. Both he and Seamus have previously contested marathons in Barcelona, Valencia and Rotterdam and he intends to return to Spain in early December for another crack at the Valencia event.

He prepared for Sunday’s race by winning overall at the Churchtown 5-mile race in Cork last month and the Antrim Half-Marathon a few weeks ago.

“Vienna was very hot, up to 26 degrees, and lots of people were suffering,” he added. “Vienna was supposed to run in April but it got deferred. We prefer running in cooler conditions. Valencia will be around 10 degrees in December which is ideal.”

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Jordan’s new role with St Paul’s

By Sean Moriarty Killarney’s Paralympic hero Jordan Lee is to take on a new role with Scott’s Lakers St Paul’s Killarney Basketball Club. Jordan began his sporting career with the local basketball club where he created history by becoming the first amputee athlete to represent their country at international level. The High Jumper then switched […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Killarney’s Paralympic hero Jordan Lee is to take on a new role with Scott’s Lakers St Paul’s Killarney Basketball Club.

Jordan began his sporting career with the local basketball club where he created history by becoming the first amputee athlete to represent their country at international level.

The High Jumper then switched to track and field and qualified for the Tokyo Paralympics where he made history by becoming the first Kerry athlete to act as a flag bearer for an opening ceremony and lead an Irish team into an Olympic Stadium.

Now back home and preparing for the next Olympics in Paris, he has returned to his first love and will join the backroom staff at the local Division One basketball club ahead of their National League campaign which begins next month.

His father Jarlath Lee is head coach with St Paul’s.

“Jordan is joining us as our strength and conditioning coach,” Jarlath told the Killarney Advertiser.

INTERNATIONALS

Meanwhile, Scott’s Lakers St Paul’s Killarney Basketball Club National League team will have a distinctive feel to it this year after securing the services of three overseas players it for the season ahead.

The club’s biggest signing is Canadian professional Ben Miller. It was originally hoped that the former two-time Manitoba Player of the Year would play for the local side last season but the pandemic got in the way and the National League was never played. However, he did play two training games this time last year before returning to Canada until travel restrictions lifted.

“He is a good guy, very approachable and very good with the young members,” Jarlath said.

The club has also signed Bulgarian International Emilian Grudov.

The 20-year-old has already represented his home country at U16, 18 and 20 level.

“He is young, athletic and very good offensively,” added Lee.

The returning Lithuanian Dianius Varanaukus completes the club international line up for the 2020/21 season.

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