Careers Co-ordinator

Leonora Dundas 


The overall aim is to prepare students to take responsibility for their own careers both at school and beyond.  

The work of the department is underpinned by five key objectives:

  • Understand themselves better and develop their capabilities.

  • Acquire the skills necessary for decision making.

  • Make choices about their own career paths, continuing education and training.

  • Be aware of education, training and career opportunities.

  • Manage transitions to new roles and situations.

A Planned programme of careers education:

  • Years 8-14

  • Information about work, educational, vocational and training opportunities.

  • Experience of Work Year 13

  • Individual guidance

  • Recording achievement and planning for the future.

Career Education comprises of a co-ordinated and progressive programme of teaching and learning activities for students in the curriculum, which will help them to develop the knowledge and skills needed to manage their own careers.  Many of these skills can be developed in subject classes, PD and Careers classes.

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St. Michael's 2022 - Low Res-293.jpg

Careers Guidance

This comprises advice and guidance for individuals through interviews and small group work and involves:

  • Clarifying present student position

  • Exploring other options

  • Evaluating and Challenging Inconsistencies

  • Action planning and identification of what needs to be done

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Careers Information

Comprehensive and reliable information is accessible to students of all ages and abilities to help them make well-informed and appropriate choices and decisions.  This is facilitated through an excellent Careers library. Information can also be channelled through their form teachers, the notice boards, the study halls and the school monitor.

Experiences of Work

Learning about work first hand helps students to develop their understanding of the meaning of work and of the skills that will be most useful to them.  This can be developed through projects, business games, mini-enterprise, guest speakers, interviews skills, career conventions, videos, competitions and work experience. Time for work experience is set aside during term two for Year 13.  Students take responsibility to locate suitable work experience situations and they will be facilitated in doing this by the careers department on request. 


Our Interview Skills programme involves Years 12 and 14. The support of the local community in helping to provide these programmes has been tremendous giving a very real experience to the pupils.

Careers Programme

The careers programme is delivered as a stand-alone subject as follows:

Year 8

1 career class per week

Year 9

1 career class per week

Year 10

1 career class per week

Year 11

1 career class per week

Year 12

1 career class per week

Year 13

1 career + research class per week

Year 14

1 career + research class per week

The programme includes the following elements:


a) Portfolio:  Each student will keep a record of their career work through school from Year 8 to Year 14.  This allows them to trace their career decision development, information gathering, recording achievement, target setting, action planning etc. This portfolio will complement their Record of Achievements.


b) Resources:  There is a comprehensive school careers library for access to literary resources such as prospectuses, application forms, journals, articles etc. Also there are 15 computers for access to programmes such as Odyssey, JED and the World Wide Web, which give up to date information on careers, courses and universities. Students applying to UCAS use the new applyonline system from home or the library. This room is also used for tutorials.


c) External Agencies:  Careers provision will be assisted by external agencies such as the Department of Education and Learning who will provide expertise to interview all students in Year 12.


d) Open Days:  Open Day trips to Jordanstown and Queens are organised for those who have displayed a commitment to researching these institutions beforehand. Pupils can also attend other Open days by arranging it through the school.


(e) Centigrade: In Year 13 students will be entered for Centigrade. This is a professional computer based programme that assesses individual interests, qualities and abilities and matches these with courses at universities and colleges throughout Great Britain and Ireland. Individual reports include worksheets geared to help research prospective courses and institutions.