Third-level ed­u­ca­tion viewed as a way out

Bray People - - NEWS -

WITH THE RE­CES­SION tak­ing its toll on un­em­ploy­ment lev­els in the coun­try more stu­dents than ever are looking at third level ed­u­ca­tion as a good op­por­tu­nity in or­der to achieve a new qual­i­fi­ca­tion, which they en­vis­age will be of use when the sit­u­a­tion im­proves.

Speak­ing to The Wick­low Peo­ple this week Prin­ci­pal of Ark­low Com­mu­nity Col­lege An­drew Bol­ger said that al­most all sixth year stu­dents have filled out their CAO forms and many have done so way ahead of sched­ule which in­di­cates that third level train­ing is very much on their minds.

‘Nearly all the stu­dents have been very keen to get their forms in and have as many op­tions as pos­si­ble open to them. They are looking at third level ed­u­ca­tion as a good op­por­tu­nity as there are so few jobs. By the time things turn around they are hop­ing to be qual­i­fied in their cho­sen fields.’

Mr. Bol­ger adds that the stu­dents are tak­ing the sit­u­a­tion very se­ri­ously and have be­come more aware of the im­pact of the re­ces­sion on the job mar­ket from a num­ber of Ca­reer Guid­ance talks and meet­ings with the Ca­reer Guid­ance teach­ers at Ark­low C.C.

Aside from secondary school stu­dents, Ark­low Com­mu­nity Col­lege also of­fers a num­ber of Post Leav­ing Cer­tifi­cate Cour­ses which are at­tract­ing par­ents as well as school-go­ers.

‘We have no­ticed that par­ents who seek to re­train or up skill are sign­ing up for our third-level cour­ses. They are very suit­able as they are based on the school cam­pus in Ark­low and can be used as a step­ping stone for fur­ther cour­ses also.’

Ac­cord­ing to Mr. Bol­ger, the lack of teach­ing jobs is also ev­i­dent from the large num­ber of applications re­ceived for sub­sti­tute po­si­tions.

‘We find that now it is much eas­ier to source teach­ers for cer­ti­fied sick leave cover or in-ser­vice days.

Also we are get­ting a lot more fully qual­i­fied teach­ers drop­ping in CVs to the school who are hop­ing to get work,’ con­cluded Mr. Bol­ger.

More stu­dents, and par­ents, are in­ter­ested in third level ed­u­ca­tion as a means of se­cur­ing their eco­nomic fu­ture.

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