Why I Changed My Mind

Sinead O’Neill, Commerce, UCC

Sinead O’Neill: I felt that I wasn’t suited to teaching

Sinead O’Neill: I felt that I wasn’t suited to teaching


I switched from primary teaching in Mary Immaculate College, Limerick to
commerce in UCC.

I felt that I wasn’t suited to primary teaching. I also felt that I didn’t choose the right college to go to. In other words, the course and college were not suited to me. So I used the change of mind option and started a new course, on half fees, in September.

When I was making the decision I wasn’t very sure about it but my parents were very supportive and made an appointment with a guidance counsellor. He did an aptitude test to decide whether or not teaching was suitable for me. I was more suited to a business or maths course. That’s when I decided to choose commerce in UCC as my first choice on my CAO.

On my first day of college I was nervous as I didn’t really know anybody on my course. However, I felt that I just needed to put myself out there and try and make as many friends as I could, which I did.

It has gone really well so far. I am sure I made the right decision in changing. The campus is so nice and everything is so close to everything. I have made many new friends along with the friends that I knew already from home. There is also a wide range of clubs and societies I can join.

Right now I am unsure of what I want to do after I leave college but because of the range of subjects I do as part of the course, there are lots of career paths I can choose, from accountancy to law.

Changing my mind from primary teaching was the right decision for me. I am much happier. I feel it is really important that you are happy in yourself in your college course because you are going to be stuck there for three or four years.

When I first decided to leave primary teaching, people said I was crazy to be leaving a course that I worked so hard to get into but it really all does come down to the fact that you have to be happy with what you are doing.

I would advise students who are unhappy in their current course and sure they don’t want to continue, to leave. I would also tell students to visit a career guidance counsellor to help put you in the right career direction.

When I did my aptitude test, the career guidance counsellor told me that if I had visited him before I applied for primary teaching, he would have pointed me away from it and pushed me more towards a course in business or maths.

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