gradireland Graduate Careers Fair 2021

Seminars 2020

Previous event seminars:

Wednesday 30th – Room 1

12:40 to 13:00
Interview Hints & Tips - virtual & in person
Presented by: Jennifer Kwan, National College of Ireland

Jen and Dale from the NCI Careers Team will be discussing their top tips for preparing and acing in person and virtual interviews.

The session will cover:

  • 4 areas of preparation for interview,
  • 3 tips for presenting yourself, and
  • 2 critical considerations to keep in mind when going into in-person and virtual interviews.

Jennifer KwanDale Ayers

Jennifer Kwan, Careers Advisor, National College of Ireland

Jennifer is a Careers Advisor for the School of Business at the National College of Ireland. Prior to joining the Careers team in NCI she worked in HR for five years in Graduate recruitment and training for Europe in ARYZTA and then in Segmatic managing the HR function hiring at Analysts at graduate and senior level. Jen will share insights into how HR and management design interview questions, how to prepare answers and some hints on what makes a graduate stand out at interview stage.

Dale Ayers, Careers & Work Placement Specialist, Robert Walters PLC

3.5 years working as a Tech Recruiter for Robert Walters PLC in Dublin, specialising Cyber Security with additional experience recruiting in the Project Management and Software Development spaces.  Now bringing this knowledge and experience to School of Computing students at National College of Ireland, giving the inside track on how to get ahead in the job-search market with guidance on CV, LinkedIn, Networking and Interview techniques. Currently looking after students studying Cyber Security, Cloud Computing, FinTech and Software Development.

13:30 to 13:50
Activities During COVID 19 to Boost your CV
During the pandemic, many of us find ourselves in periods self-isolation and frequent social distancing. But you can use this difficult time to your benefit. Come along to this session and learn from our career’s advisors and coaches on how you use this time to enrich your CV with relevant and valuable skills and experience.

Fiona Hartley, Director, Hartley People

Fiona has a Masters in Personal and Executive Coaching from UCC and is member of the British Psychological Society. She has a varied career and education including an Honours Degree in Production Management from the University of Limerick, a Diploma in Packaging Technology from the Institute of Packaging and a Train the Trainer certificate from the IITD. Fiona is also certified to administer Thomas International PPA and GIA tests and is a registered tester for a variety of psychometric and aptitude tests.

Peter Lewis, Career Coach, Technological University of Dublin

Peter is a qualified Career Coach with Technological University Dublin (City Campus) working primarily with engineering students. He has over 20 years experience working in career guidance/coaching in higher education and further education  where confidence-building and instilling a sense of personal efficacy is at the core of his work with students.  Peter also has a keen interest in enhancing graduate employability and supporting student transition into higher education.

Jill Barret, Career Coach, Technological Univeristy Dublin

Jill Barrett is a qualified Career Coach working with Technological University Dublin (City) and has over 20 years' experience in coaching and training.  In coaching clients from a diverse range of backgrounds, from school leavers and college students to sports professionals and C-Suite executives, Jill supports her clients in thinking and acting optimally to achieve the best outcomes in life.

14:10 to 14:30
An Introduction to Specialisterne
Presented by: Specialisterne Panel

This session will provide an overview of Specialisterne Ireland and the services we offer graduates on the Autism Spectrum and those with Dyslexia, Dyspraxia and ADHD to support them to develop interview skills and move closer to employment opportunities. We will also speak about our partnerships with neurodiverse friendly  companies, the neurodiverse friendly recruitment process and provide an overview of reasonable accommodations that candidates receive within these companies.

Noreen Murphy, Operations Manager

Noreen is the Operations Manager for Specialisterne Ireland. She is responsible for assessing candidate needs, working with candidates on an individual basis to develop skills for employment and providing ongoing support to candidates in the workplace

Noreen has a background in psychology and has completed an MSc in Psychological Science. She has several years of experience in the area of research and implementation of interventions to improve communication skills in people on the autism spectrum.

Emma Delemere, Business Manager

Emma is the Business Development Manager with Specialisterne Ireland and is responsible for supporting business needs in addition to providing assistance to the assessment and support of our candidates, their managers, and mentors.

Emma has a background in Psychology having completed a B.A. in Psychology and an M.Sc. in Applied Behaviour Analysis and is a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst. She has several years’ experience managing Autism services both in Ireland and Canada. Emma is passionate about supporting individuals with Autism to identify and fulfill their career goals and reach their potential. 

Adie Bourke, Assessment & Support Executive

Adie is responsible for assessment of candidate needs, working with them on a one to one basis to aid them to develop skills for employment as well as supporting our candidate to be successful in the workplace.

Adie has a background in Psychology and has completed an MSc in Social Policy. She has several years previous experience working with both adults and children on the autism spectrum helping then to reach their potential.

Aoife O’Meara, Junior Assessment & Support Executive

Aoife is responsible for supporting candidates to create up-to-date, professional CV’s as well as assessing the supports needed for candidates and supporting them in the workplace.

Aoife is a recent MSc Work & Organisational Psychology graduate with a background in Social Care and has experience working with people on the autism spectrum in a variety of settings to help them gain skills necessary for independence.


16:05 to 16:25
CV Tips - How to Create a CV that Stands out from the Crowd
Presented by: Angela Collins, Head of Careers, Waterford IT

When a recruiter receives your CV, it needs to be well presented and it needs to catch his or her eye. It also needs to tell a story and why you are the right person for the job. There are different ways of formatting and presenting CVs in order to best present you as a candidate.

Make the most of this session: Bring your CV; take notes of key points that are relevant to you; ask questions! – this is your opportunity to talk to the professionals and ask questions that will help you create the CV that will get you noticed!

Angela Collins

16:45 to 17:05
Facing Personal Setbacks and Building Resilience
Presented by: John Slattery, Inspo

The following are the objectives of the session: 

  • To offer a perspective that will shape setbacks as invaluable learning opportunities 
  • To help attendees understand their own resilience so that they can draw on it every day to manage, and emerge stronger from, challenging situations and periods like we face right now.

John Slattery

John Slattery, CEO, Inspo

John Slattery is the CEO of Inspo. The vision that John has for Inspo is to become the leading inspirer and motivator of the human spirit. John works with companies to deliver memorable experiences for staff – with a view to improving morale, motivation and resilience. John’s goal for any individual that he and Inspo works with is to help them make great life and career choices. The five areas that John and Inspo are most called upon are (1) delivering motivational talks/training, such as managing yourself and your resilience (2) 1-1 coaching (3) helping organisations/teams to create a People Vision and bring it to life (4) facilitating and MC-ing sessions with a focus on people and (5) working with Grad & Intern Programmes and Third Level Institutions.

Wednesday 30th – Room 2

13:40 to 14:10
A Career in Technology
Presented by: Emma McConville, Marketing Executive, First Derivatives
In this panel session we will discuss how to build and succeed in a career in technology. What are the top jobs right now? We will also look at successful careers for women in the technology sector. Let us help you plan your career progression and identify the key competencies necessary to make you an attractive candidate to top employers.

Emma McConville

Emma McConville, Marketing Executive, First Derivatives

Emma is a graduate recruitment and marketing executive for First Derivatives plc. Emma joined First Derivatives following her graduation from Ulster University with a degree in Communication, Advertising and Marketing in 2019. Emma's role involves recruiting technical and finance orientated graduates for First Derivatives on a global scale, including the UK, US, Canada and APAC region.


14:50 to 15:20
Secrets of a Standout Graduate During COVID19
Presented by: Sinead Moloney, ESB and Lucy Palcic, Deloitte
Come along to this panel discussion and gain some insights into what both employers and careers advisors consider to be the skills of a successful graduate during the challenging times of COVID-19. Get tips on the current trends and what extra-curricular activities can give your CV an edge.

Sinead Moloney, Early Careers Talent Acquisitions Lead, ESB

Sinead began her career in Recruitment in 2013. Now an Early Careers Talent Acquisition Team lead in ESB, she has experience in every facet of early careers – specializing in full life cycle apprentice, intern and graduate recruitment. Sinead is responsible for building ESB’s future workforce to lead the transition to a low-carbon energy future.

Lucy Palcic, Early Careers Recruitment Lead, Deloitte

Lucy has over 5 years’ experience working in Early Careers Recruitment with Deloitte Ireland and is involved in all elements of the recruitment process across apprentices, internships and graduate programmes for the firm. A large part of Lucy's role is supporting graduates to adapt to the ‘new normal’ in response to Covid-19. Lucy is also involved in developing more opportunities for women in STEM with Deloitte and is a member of the Connecting Women in Technology (CWIT) committee. 

15:40 to 16:00
The Importance of Employability Skills
Presented by: Panel Discussion
Our panel will share with you their hints and tips on how to highlight your employability skills, both on the job and in interview. It is always important to show the recruiter evidence of what you are capable of. We’ll discuss how you can keep your skills current and relevant and how you can best highlight them. >

Sarah MadiganHelen BrennanCatherine Watts

Sarah Madigan, Recruitment Manager, PwC

Sarah is the Graduate Recruitment Manager with PwC.  Her background is in HR  and she has worked with PwC for the past 5 years.  Sarah looks after all aspects of graduate and undergraduate recruitment within the Firm. She is passionate about employability skills for students and how they can build these in their daily college, work and social lives.

Helen Brennan, HR Business Partner, Colgate-Palmolive 

Helen is the HR Business Partner in Colgate Palmolive Support Service Organisation. She has worked in HR for over 10 years. Helen is passionate about giving students real life experiences in organisations to help them develop and grow during their college years. Colgate Palmolive invests in their internship program as they look to give permanent positions to the students who complete the program. Helen feels that the importance of  employability skills for students is even more important than ever before as the world of work is changing rapidly for everyone'. 

Catherine Watts, Graduate and University Relations Manager, Kingspan Group PLC


16:20 to 16:50
Looking for Purpose. Careers in the Not-for-Profit sector
Presented by: Adrian McCarthy, Recruitment Coordinator- 2into3
There are some 20,000 not-for-profit organisations in Ireland. It includes organisations such as the GAA, SVP, the Irish Times, Concern, the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, UCD, Cluid Housing Association, Dublin and St. Vincent's University Hospital. Graduates can find opportunities to work with these organisations as nurses, social workers, accountants, engineers, fundraisers, teachers, marketers and much more. If you are seeking a career with purpose come along to ‘Looking for Purpose. Careers in the Not-for-Profit sector’.

Adrian McCarthy

Adrian McCarthy, Recruitment Coordinator

Thursday 1st – Room 1

12:40 to 13:00
Creating impact with your CV post pandemic
Presented by: Marie Kielty, TUD

When a recruiter receives your CV, it needs to be well presented and it needs to catch his or her eye. It also needs to tell a story and why you are the right person for the job. There are different ways of formatting and presenting your CV in order to create the best impression. Make the most of this session by having your CV to hand, take notes of key points that are relevant to you and ask questions to make sure you get the advice and tips that you need.

Marie Kielty

Marie Kielty, IT Careers Officer, TUD

Marie has been the Careers Officer in IT Tallaght for over 15 years providing both undergraduate and postgraduate advice and support to students from a broad range of disciplines. She previously worked in a similar role for over 8 years in another college. Marie brings a significant wealth of experience having been working directly with students in the higher education sector for all of this time. As an undergraduate she studied Psychology in NUI Galway and then completed a postgraduate in Business (HR) in Smurfit Business School. Marie has also completed qualifications in Emotional Intelligence and Levels A & B Psychometric Testing and is MCIPD qualified.

14:10 to 14:30
Networking in a COVID Environment
Presented by: Sinead English, Hilt Careers

This session will cover:

  • How to put a plan in place to hear about the 70% of jobs that never get advertised.
  • How has Covid-19 changed how you network and how can you ace your networking plan.

Sinead English

Sinéad English, Founder, Hilt Careers

Sinéad English is a Careers Consultant and founder of career management firm – Hilt. Hilt works with clients across Europe advising on all aspects of the career management process, from career planning and effective networking, to writing CVs and interview preparation. Sinead and the Hilt team have worked with clients across a broad spectrum of industries, experience and seniority engaging in one-to-one training sessions and delivering group career management workshops. Hilt also works with organisations to deliver interviewer and management training to ensure the organisation is making effective hiring decisions. Sinead’s best-selling book – CV and Interview 101 – How to Apply and Interview for Jobs was published in 2019

15:30 to 15:50
Visa tips for international students
Presented by: Aoife Kilmurray Senior Manager HR Services (Global Immigration Services), PwC & Shane Mooney Head of Student Experience, Dublin Business School

In this discussion we will cover the following;

  • What are the different visas you can apply for
  • How you can extend these and why you would need to do so
  • What are the recent changes that have been implemented into visa structures 

16:05 to 16:25
CV hints and tips
Presented by: Angela Collins, Waterford IT

When a recruiter receives your CV, it needs to be well presented and it needs to catch his or her eye. It also needs to tell a story and why you are the right person for the job. There are different ways of formatting and presenting CVs in order to best present you as a candidate.

Make the most of this session: Bring your CV; take notes of key points that are relevant to you; ask questions! – this is your opportunity to talk to the professionals and ask questions that will help you create the CV that will get you noticed!


Angela Collins

16:45 to 17:05
Transferable Skills - your best strategy to career path success
Presented by: Karina Septore, Careers Advisor, National College of Ireland

The session will focus on the following aspects of transferable skills

  • Defining transferable skills
  • Importance of transferable skills in the changing job market
  • Ways to learn and develop the skills
  • Showcasing your transferable skills

Karina Septore

Karina holds a degree in Human Resources Management, PgCert in Leadership and Career Development, Award in Coaching and Consulting and completing Masters in Career Guidance. Previously, she has worked in various higher education institutions, such as Coventry University (UK), Dublin Institute of Technology and Trinity College Dublin, as well as led some not-for-profit projects aiming to provide training and experience for international students in the UK.

17:20 to 17:50
What Lies Ahead…The Class of 2020 and Beyond
What happens after graduation? What are the implications of current events on the job market for the class of 2020? These and other key discussion points will be at the centre of our conversation. Join us for our final session of the gradireland Graduate Careers Fair 2020 and gain some insights as to how to make the most of the challenging times ahead.

Siobhain Scanlon Eimear Coffey

Siobháin Scanlon, Early Careers Manager, Musgrave

Siobháin has been working with early careers talent in Musgrave since 2014 and has over 16 years’ experience in HR. With a MSc in Personal and Management Coaching, Siobháin partners with graduates, the business and key stakeholders in designing, developing and implementing initiatives which align early career talent development with Musgrave’s strategic purpose. This strategic approach has led to the Musgrave Graduate Programme  winning multiple awards for the development experience and being recognised as a Graduate Employer of Choice.


Eimear Coffey, Vice President of Technology, Fidelity Investments

Eimear Coffey is a Vice President of Technology leading multiple technology engagements in Ireland for Fidelity Investments.  Eimear started her career in Boston as an Associate Software Engineer with Fidelity and returned to Galway in 2012. She has worked in a variety of roles as a developer, analyst, project manager, product manager and today leads a strong team of technologists that engineer cutting-edge technology to support Fidelity’s clients and services.

In her role, Eimear is also executive sponsor for the Technology Graduate Programme, Leap, for Fidelity Investments in Ireland. She has held the Chair position for some of Fidelity Ireland’s employee resources groups - Women’s Leadership Group and the Leadership Community of Practice.

Thursday 1st – Room 2

12:10 to 12:40
Managing Your Career During Times of Uncertainty
Presented by: Tom Tully, Industry Talent Manager, Bord Bia & Breffni O'Sullivan Talent Acquisition (Student & Graduate Recruitment Program, Ericsson & Orla Bohan Engineering Graduate, Pfizer

How will the current economic crisis impact your employment opportunities and what can you do to manage your career under the current career climate? Join us in this session to hear from professionals from across different industries on the challenges and how you can use this time as an opportunity to grow and develop. 

Breffni O'Sullivan

Tom Tully, Industry Talent Manager, Bord Bia

Spanning sectors as diverse as Media, Tech, Food & Drink, Tom’s 20+ year career has seen him work for companies such as: RTE, Yahoo!, Microsoft and Bord Bia. Fulfilling roles that include journalism, program management, people management and executive talent development.

Tom is currently Bord Bia Industry talent manager, where he is responsible for the strategic and structural direction of the Bord Bia Talent Academy. A corporate academic partnership that hothouses the next generation of executive talent for the Food & Drink industry in Ireland.

Breffni O'Sullivan, Recruiter, Student & Graduate Program, Ericsson IE

Breffni joined Ericsson in January 2020 and oversees all aspects of recruitment and assessment for students, interns, and graduates starting their careers with Ericsson in Athlone and Dublin. He joined after 2.5 years in a specialist technical recruitment agency. Prior to this, he worked in entertainment retail and operations management

13:00 to 13:30
Turning Adversity into Advantage
Presented by: Panel Discussion
While the future might seem uncertain for graduates, there are unique ways to turn challenging times into a positive. This panel discussion will highlight the proactive and creative ways in which you can thrive – whether that is transferring your skills to another industry or understanding what new job opportunities are out there and could potentially be a fit for you.

Gillian Skinner, Marketing and Talent Specialist, Jameson International Graduate Programme

Gillian is a marketing professional with over 5 years’ experience in the FMCG industry. Currently in the role of  Marketing and Talent Specialist for the Jameson International Graduate Programme, she is   passionate about talent & the pursuit of 'best fit' talent for the programme.

Paul Vance, Director and Head of Resourcing, KPMG

Paul is a Director and Head of Resourcing in KPMG Ireland. His responsibilities include workforce planning, experience hire recruitment, campus recruitment, global mobility and immigration.

13:45 to 14:10
A Career in Engineering
Presented by: Kieran Lillis, Head of the Electrical Engineering Department, PM Group & Sarah Daly, Project Engineer, PM Group

Come along to this session to hear from our panellists about what a career in engineering is really like. Our panel will cover the different career opportunities and roles in the industry. See where your career in engineering can take you…

Kieran Lillis

Kieran Lillis, Head of the Electrical Engineering Department, PM Group

Kieran is the head of the Electrical Engineering Department and brings 16 years’ experience to this role. He is responsible for all electrical design and construction support activities. This includes all aspects in the delivery of PM Group’s projects including department resourcing, performance management, training & development, quality, health & safety and business development.

Kieran’s experience includes front-end engineering/detailed engineering design, specification of all types of electrical equipment and design of control interfaces.

Kieran has extensive experience in electrical engineering design for a wide variety of clients and sectors including, Pharmaceutical, Food, Mission Critical, and Energy.

Sarah Daly, Project Engineer, PM Group

Sarah is a project engineer with experience in the Management of projects at different lifecycle stages (including due diligence and concept, design, and construction support), primarily in pharmaceutical and medical technologies industries.  Skills include design management and coordination, commercial awareness, cost management, resource planning and project scheduling

14:30 to 14:50
Technical Interviews
Presented by: Ian Doyle, Guidewire

This workshop will go through what a candidate can expect during a typical technical white boarding session as part of an interview. We will cover how to best prepare for this, the kind of technical questions that might be asked as well as what the interviewer is looking for when they ask certain questions. 

The goal is to provide students advice and guidance so they can be prepared for this during an interview and showcase their technical ability as best as they can.

15:40 to 16:10
Digital Portfolios - Showcasing Your Very Best Work
Presented by: Dawn O'Connor (IADT), Fabian Erlinghauser (Cartoon Saloon) and Rob McDonnell (Firewood)

Dawn O'Connor (IADT), Fabian Erlinghauser (Cartoon Saloon), and Rob McDonnell (Firewood) discuss the importance of a well-executed and impactful online portfolio to showcase your very best work. If you are interested in attracting key employers it is all about being as creative as you can and seeing this medium as your first point of contact. Top tips for effectively communicating your talent visually.

Fabian Erlinghäuser, Cartoon Saloon

Fabian has 20 years industry experience at Cartoon Saloon. He was Animation Director of the three Academy Award nominated feature films 'The Breadwinner', 'Song Of The Sea', and 'The Secret Of Kells' ; as well as Assistant Director on 'Song Of The Sea'. He currently co-directs Cartoon Saloon's new TV-show 'Dorg Van Dango'.

Rob MacDonnell, Group Creative Director EMEA, Firewood

Rob has been working in the industry for 18 years. He started out as an artworker in Snap Printing in 2005, and has worked in various roles as a graphic designer before changing to art direction in 2008 while working at Epsilon where he spent 4 years as the creative lead on Jaguar / Landrover. He was recruited to head up Firewood's EMEA team in mid 2017 and since then he have built a team of circa 40 people across Dublin and London. Rob currently manages a creative team of 25 or so creatives of which 14 work in the digital design / art direction side.

Dawn O'Connor, Careers Officer, IADT

Now leading IADT Careers, Dawn has had a career coaching and facilitating Students, Graduates and Executives  across college, company and industry sectors for over 20 years. She specialises in helping individuals both build personal strategy and articulate this in ways that have maximum impact.

Get in touch

If you have any questions about booking a stand at our fairs, please contact the gradireland team by using the contact form below.