In conversation with:
What inspired you to pursue a college course in computing?
Fortunately for me, I grew up with people around me who were very technically minded individuals who worked in IT. My Dad, for a start, worked as a technician fixing TVs and game consoles. Later, my uncle worked as a technician also, fixing Computer systems, consoles, and mobile phones. So, from being exposed to that area of work at a young age, I developed a keen interest in computers from what made them work (hardware) to the engines that drove them (software). I think for me, Computers in general, be-it in Software or Hardware, was always an area I was going to pursue after school.
Was there a good focus on STEM in your school in Offaly?
While there was some focus on STEM in my school, I feel like there could have been and even should have been a greater effort made to promote STEM areas in school. I feel as though students should be exposed to some level of coding in school, as it is a fantastic way of getting your brain to kick into problem solving mode. Areas such as Music, Maths, Languages, History, to name a few, are there for students to study so why not coding?
It was good to hear in your Vlog that you like the creative aspect of your previous work in Ericsson.. What led you specifically to software engineering and what does that involve?
One of the main draws for me to Software Engineering was the prospects it offers in terms of career progression. At the moment, Software Engineering is one of the leading careers for career progression which is fantastic. It is a universally demanded skill which allows you to be flexible in terms of where it is you want to work in the world. And lastly, I feel like a job where a person can be creative and are allowed the freedom to promote new ideas and watch them grow is a huge pull for people.
What has been the most interesting aspect of your third level studies?
What I found most interesting about my third level studies was the difference in interest and motivation I had for studying. In school, I was interested in Maths, Design and Communication Graphics, and French and that was it. My motivation to perform well in other subjects which I had no real interest in was minimal. In college, I found that studying something I was passionate about changed my perspective on study and gave me a much greater motivation to perform as well as I possible could.
What does the future hold for you career wise in a perfect world post pandemic?
My hope for a post-world pandemic in Software Engineering involves lots of opportunity to travel abroad to Software Engineering conferences in the US and Sweden with Ericsson. I hope to develop new ideas which I can hopefully present at a future LFN conference in Miami to the wider Software Engineering community.
What advice would you give to a young person still at school who is considering a future in science or engineering?
My advice to anyone looking into a future involving studying is to pick something you enjoy. I think enjoying what you’re doing is so important in life and makes the journey through education so much easier. Science and Engineering are too ever-growing areas which offer huge prospects for young professionals but at the end of the day, do what makes you happy.