#FYI: Careers fair aims to combat college drop-out rates

RDS event to see students and graduates meet employers, attend seminars, workshops

The #FYI careers advisory event organised by GradIreland will show first year students exactly what is involved in particular jobs. File photograph: Matt Kavanagh/The Irish Times

A careers advisory event to help combat high drop-out levels at college will take place in the RDS next month.

The #FYI careers advisory event organised by GradIreland will show first year students exactly what is involved in particular jobs.

More than 70 per cent of students do not get beyond their first year of college in some higher education courses, new figures show.

In general, university courses have the lowest drop-out rates (between 10 and 12 per cent), while they are about twice that in institutes of technology.


The highest rates of non-progression are concentrated among higher certificate (level six) and ordinary degree (level seven) courses at institutes of technology, which typically require relatively low points in the Leaving Cert.

On February 8th, RDS Simmonscourt will host almost 100 of Ireland’s top companies for a careers fair.

The event will see more than 2,000 students and graduates attend to meet employers, attend seminars and take part in skills-building workshops and CV clinics.

This triple event brings together the gradireland #FYI, Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) and language careers fairs into one mega careers event to help students and graduates plan their futures.

First-hand information

There will be a gradireland FYI section which will provide all college students with first-hand information about what exactly is involved in various career areas.

Video interviews with more than 100 recent graduates will be playing in 25 sector “hubs”, letting students hear for themselves what it is like to work in a wide range of jobs and careers.

“Gradireland #FYI was set up specifically to provide students with clear information on what working life is like across a range of popular career sectors.

“Recent data has highlighted alarming drop-out rates in certain third level courses, but we know that if students have a better understanding of what career paths are open to them, that can have a significant positive effect in both course choice and successful course completion,” says Mark Mitchell, gradireland director.

Visitors to the #FYI zone of the event will be able to watch the career interviews as well as discuss potential careers with recent graduates and HR managers from graduate recruiters.

Students can also take part in interactive employability skills workshops, based on some of the tasks which employers use in graduate assessment centres.

There will be a STEM area to target students interested in pursuing a career in STEM.

Help students understand

Ireland’s top companies recruiting in this sector will be there on the day to help students understand what careers are available in this sector.

Students will find out what a whiteboard interview involves, what key skills tech companies are looking for, and discover how to build a career in science and engineering.

There will also be a “Language Zone”, as employers consistently report that fluency in a second language is hugely advantageous in landing a graduate position.

The Language Zone provides multilingual students an opportunity to network with employers looking to hire graduates who have “skills plus a language”.

Entry is free and attendees can visit gradireland.com/events for tickets and more details.