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What are the options for Leaving Cert students outside of CAO?

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This week has been dominated by the release of CAO Round 1 offers and cut-off points for courses for 2021 which rose dramatically for many courses.

It is important to realise that there are plenty of options to progress in your education and training that do not depend on how many Leaving Cert points you have received.

As well as looking at the Available Places options on www.cao.ie, make sure to look at all the pathways open to you.

Post Leaving Cert Courses

Colleges of Further Education are still accepting applications for Post Leaving Cert (PLC) courses across a huge variety of career areas and sectors so check them out this week as places are filling up.

Entry to these QQI FET/FETAC courses is not based on points and once you complete them, you have the option to apply to higher education in Ireland, the UK and Europe through the many progression routes available.

Approximately one in five students applying to colleges and universities through CAO each year come from the further education sector.

PLCs give you a great foundation in a particular area before you have to commit to a longer undergraduate course.

Details of PLCs can be found on www.fetchcourses.ie , www.careeersportal.ie www.qualifax.ie and on the websites of your local colleges of further education or local Education and Training Board (ETB).

Check out www.kerrycollege.ie for an extensive range of options and help is available from their Admissions Office and Guidance Counselling staff. If you are interested in progressing onto higher education Information on progression routes see www.cao.ie.

Apprenticeships and Traineeships
It is also well worth looking at the range of apprenticeships available across multiple sectors including the twenty five craft apprenticeships categorised under motor, electrical, construction and engineering and an ever-growing number of options from fifteen different industry sectors including finance, ICT, biopharma, arboriculture, hairdressing, hospitality and food, insurance, logistics, property services, recruitment and sales.
These newer apprenticeships provide qualifications from levels 5 to 9 on the National Framework of Qualifications, which means that you can qualify to degree and masters levels in certain areas. Apprenticeships offer skills-based training with at least 50% of it taking place in the workplace and unlike full-time college courses, you are earning while you learn. For further information check out www.apprenticeship.ie
Like apprenticeships, traineeships focus on skills-based training in career areas where there is an identified skills need.
They span across a range of industry sectors including business and retail, media, manufacturing, agriculture, horticulture & mariculture, care, construction, engineering, animal science, fashion and beauty, finance, ICT, hospitality, sports & leisure and logistics. Traineeships last for between six and twenty four months with at least 30% on the job training.
You will find the details on https://www.solas.ie/programmes/traineeship/ and on the 16 Education and Training Board (ETB) websites located around the country including www.kerryetb.ie
National Learning Network

Explore the training options at the National Learning Network which has over 40 centres across the country offering specialist training and support services for students and adults who need special support. Training is provided in areas such as ICT, retail skills, construction skills, introductory and employment skills. You can get more information on www.rehab.ie/national-learning-network/ and you can contact the Kerry centre on tralee@nln.ie or 066-7122533

Study Abroad Options

There are still options for students to apply for colleges outside of Ireland. While most places are filled in Europe see www.eunicas.ie and www.medicalpoland.ie for details of some colleges that are still accepting applications. UCAS Clearing is open up to October 19 for students who wish to apply for vacant places on college courses in the UK. In these cases the sooner you apply the better.

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 Careers Advisor - For details see www.mycareerplan.ie or follow @mycareerplan on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

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Weird and wonderful insurance policies

As it is January I thought I would start the year on a light hearted note. Lloyds of London is an insurance marketplace founded in a London coffee shop over 300 years ago. Today it is the world’s leading market for specialist insurance, from large maritime risks to space satellites. Here are some of the […]

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As it is January I thought I would start the year on a light hearted note.

Lloyds of London is an insurance marketplace founded in a London coffee shop over 300 years ago. Today it is the world’s leading market for specialist insurance, from large maritime risks to space satellites.

Here are some of the more interesting and obscure insurance policies put in place over the years.
· David Beckham insured his legs with Lloyds for £100m in 2006

· Dolly Parton has insured her 40dd breasts for £3.8m

· Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards hands are insured for $1.6m

· Michael Flatleys legs were insured for $47 Million. The policy was only in effect when he was touring and forbade him from dancing except on stage.

· James Dean took out a life policy for $100,000 just a week before his tragic death at the age of 25

· The actor Richard Burton purchased a 69.42 carat diamond from Cartier for $1.1 Million in 1969 as a gift for Elizabeth Taylor. It was the world’s most expensive diamond at the time. Once Lloyds had insured the diamond they specified that Taylor should wear it in public for only 30 days a year and even then be protected by security guards. The diamond was sold in 1978 for an estimated $5 Million which would equate to roughly $19 Million today.

· According to novelist and inventor Arthur C Clarke, director Stanley Kubrick wanted to take out insurance with Lloyds to protect himself against losses in the event that extra-terrestrial intelligence was discovered before his movie, ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ was released. Lloyds refused to quote for this one.

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Kerry to feature in new TG4 documentary on Wild Atlantic Way

Three episodes of a new ten-part TG4 series on the Wild Atlantic Way were filmed in County Kerry. The series, which started last Wednesday night this week, and continues every Wednesday for the next nine weeks, follows the Wild Atlantic Way from Donegal to Kerry. In this series ‘An Cósta Thiar’, presenter Áine Ní Bhreisleáin gains […]

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Three episodes of a new ten-part TG4 series on the Wild Atlantic Way were filmed in County Kerry.

The series, which started last Wednesday night this week, and continues every Wednesday for the next nine weeks, follows the Wild Atlantic Way from Donegal to Kerry.

In this series ‘An Cósta Thiar’, presenter Áine Ní Bhreisleáin gains an insight into the culture, challenges and benefits of living by the Atlantic and to find out if seawater still flows through the veins of its coastal communities.

On her travels, Áine will meet with the people of the coast, both young and old. She will spend time in the company of people who live and work by the sea, learning more about the attraction of these areas, and this life, through their eyes, stories and experiences. She will meet those communities and people who have a strong affinity with the coast and the sea, through new businesses, traditional livelihoods, recreational activities, ecology, birdwatching, eco-tours, swimming, boats (of all kinds) and more.

Áine began her journey at home in Gaoth Dobhair and heads to the wilds of Árainn Mhóir on the second leg of journey.
The third show platforms south Donegal while in week 4, Áine heads to the beautiful Achill Island.

Half way through her journey from Donegal to Kerry, Áine is in Carna in Conamara while in the the sixth programme, Áine continues her journey on the Galway coast, this time in Cois Fharraige

Áine visits Inis Oírr in the seventh programme, the smallest of the three Oileán Árainn, to explore how life has changed for islanders in recent generations through fishing, farming, tourism and sport.

In programme eight, Áine continues her journey, heading for the West Kerry coastline this time around, rowing with a local musician, Breanndán Ó Beaglaoich, a boatbuilder Eddie Hutch and even All-Ireland champions in Cumann Rámhaíochta an Daingin. She investigates the attraction of sea swimming for local women with local group ‘Snámh for the Soul’ goes foraging and paddleboarding with a woman who lives and breathes the sea and all it has to offer, Susan Feirtéar.

In the penultimate programme, Áine continues on her journey around the Corca Dhuibhne coast, exploring the history of trade in An Daingean with Brenda Uí Shúilleabháin and how the coast inspires artists with the talented Tomáisín Ó Cíobháin. She takes a class with local yoga instructor, Ails Ní Chonchúir and heads out to sea with local guide, Eoghan Ó Slatara, to learn about the islands on the west Kerry coast and she tastes some local seafood but she has to cook it first at the Dingle Cookery School.

Áine ends her journey in Uíbh Ráthach, in South Kerry. She gains a different perspective on the sea while snorkling with Gráinne Ní Ailín from Sea Synergy and surfing with Cian O’Connor, explores the long history of this coastal community from the time of the Milesians with poet and historian, Paddy Bushe, and learns about the Seine boat with a local TikToker, Séaghan Ó Suilleabháin, better known as The Kerry Cowboy, and is there a better way to finish her journey than a first visit to the majestic Sceilg islands?

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