Over 200 secondary students take part in GMIT 'Future Skills' event
Date Article Written:
Tuesday, May 5, 2015
Over 200 Secondary School students from Galway, Mayo, Roscommon and Clare attended GMIT recently, to participate in the ‘Future Skills’ project, supported by Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology Access Service.
During the ‘GMIT Future Skills’ project, the students completed workshops with the assistance of business volunteers from local Galway companies including Hewlett Packard, Electronic Arts, AVAYA, SAP, Cambus Medical, AIB, Supermacs and Top Oil. The students explored employment opportunities which were based on their own interests and examined ways to access these opportunities, through their education.
Deirdre O’Connor, Access Officer at GMIT, welcomed the students and informed them of the courses available at GMIT and also advised them of the support that the Access Office provides for students on the campus. They were given an extensive tour by GMIT staff, where the visitors saw the various schools on the campus and it’s impressive facilities.
Pádraig Ó'Céidigh opened the event and a number of other guest speakers from local organisations told the students about their own education and career path, highlighting any ‘bumps on the road’ that they met along the way!
During his address to the students, Pádraig Ó Céidigh said: “I would strongly advise you to get involved in entrepreneurship. It can be in your community or in a company and you can create the changes there. Test yourself, push yourself and whatever you do in life, do it because of you. I have a deep passion for education and learning and today at ‘GMIT Future Skills’ you should absorb all of the information you get and I’m asking you to give it your best shot, as your education can make a real difference in your life.”
The students were given examples of how their education can enable them to have a successful career and encouraged to aim for their dreams! The guest speakers also outlined the range of opportunities that are available for new graduates in local Galway companies, which will be invaluable to them when the time comes for them to decide on course choices, in the near future.
Pat Lam, Head Coach, Connacht Rugby got an enthusiastic reception from the students and he advised the students, “The greatest gift you can give to those around you is to develop yourself. Good times don’t change your character, it’s the tough times that are an opportunity to grow and everyone faces tough times, but you must never give up. Things can be difficult at times but if you change the way you think and you are willing to persevere, you can achieve anything you want in life.”
GMIT ‘Future Skills’, which is now in its 6th year, is an intensive project for the students and comprises of three phases. The project begins with a local business volunteer visiting the students and teaching a six-week programme in their classroom, looking at the link between education and the workplace. They then visit a company in Galway, to learn about the various employment opportunities available to them in their local area.
Finally, the project culminates with the workshops and tour of GMIT, where they explore the qualifications they need to pursue their preferred career, which is extremely beneficial to them, as they enter the senior cycle curriculum at their schools.
Deirdre O’Connor, GMIT Access Officer, says: “All of the secondary school students participating in GMIT Future Skills have the potential to go to college. Today in GMIT, they will meet past pupils from their schools who are now students and staff here in GMIT. Today is their first step along a very exciting road and we are all here to help and support them to reach their goal”.
Junior Achievement Ireland encourages young people to remain in education and teaches them the skills they need to succeed in a changing world.
Junior Achievement Ireland teaches young people about the world of work, encouraging them to remain in education. This year 65,000 Irish children, from Senior Infants to Leaving Certificate, will take part in Junior Achievement science, maths and enterprise programmes in schools throughout the country. The not-for-profit organisation brings enthusiastic business volunteers from local organisations into the classroom to run enterprise and life skills programmes motivating and inspiring young people to value education and equip them with the skills they need to succeed at school and in life.
Schools participating in GMIT Future Skills 2015:
Calasanctius College, Oranmore
Mercy College, Galway
Presentation Secondary School, Galway
Galway Community College
Dunmore Community College
Roscommon Community College
Coláiste Chroí Mhuire, Spiddal
Archbishop McHale College, Tuam
Mercy Secondary School, Tuam
St. Louis Community School, Kiltimagh, Co. Mayo
Ennistymon Vocational School, Co. Clare
Attending the recent GMIT Future Skills 2015 event were visiting Spanish students at Archbishop McHale College, Tuam, with Pat Lam, Connacht Rugby Coach.