Spioraid Naoimh in Laytown, Co. Meath
Degree in Accounting and Finance
Religious Education Award
Why did you choose teaching & why Hibernia College?
I have always had a passion for education but chose a different career path for many years. When the chance presented itself to retrain there was only one option for me. I enjoy watching children learn and am delighted to now be a part of that process.
What field of work or study were you in before you started your PME?
My undergraduate degree is in Accounting and Finance. I am a qualified accountant and worked for many years in the financial services industry. While I enjoyed an interesting career while working in finance I always kept abreast of developments in education in Ireland. Having four children of my own, I fully appreciated the importance of education and the key role that primary school teachers play in children’s educational development and I now feel privileged to be part of this process.
Can you tell us a bit about your research project and why you focused on this area?
The inspiration for my research project arose from my experiences working in the financial services sector. Problem-solving is such an integral part of finance operations and of business in general and the development of problem-solving skills needs to start at a young age. I was interested to investigate how the Irish education system and the teaching and learning of Mathematics in particular is preparing our children for their future careers.
Now that you have graduated, what are your plans?
Since graduation I have been extremely fortunate to be offered a permanent teaching position in a fantastic school in Co. Meath. My personal focus this year is on engaging with and completing the Droichead process. My priority is to ensure that the children in my care are provided with the best possible opportunities for learning in a safe, fun environment while being mindful of their health and wellbeing. I also hope to continue my professional development in a number of areas over the coming years.
What piece of advice would you give to any person considering starting a PME.
My advice would be to embrace the challenge and give your very best effort in all areas of the programme. The PME workload can be intense at times and having a good support system around you is important, be they family, friends or your fellow students. I was lucky to meet a fantastic group of students on the same journey and we were a constant source of support to each other. Attendance at on-sites and tutorials helped me not only to access the advice of tutors but also gave opportunities to meet with other students and discuss workload, assignments and school placement.