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Trinity College Dublin

Plan Your Career

There are lots of jobs which you could do. Each of these positions may vary in terms of complexity, variety, potential types of colleagues, clients or management, potential work environment or sector… the only element, which remains constant, is you.

Below are:
(a) some questions to consider
(b) some guidance tools to aid your reflection

(a) Questions for your consideration

There are a number of areas you can focus on to enhance your self-knowledge, placing you in a strong position to make the best career choices for you. Consider:

  • What really motivates you in work - your beliefs & values are important here.
  • Your interests both from an academic and extra-curricular perspective, what type of career and work culture might suit you best, and where your strengths lie in terms of skillset.
  • Your emotional intelligence, this refers to how you manage your own emotions and the emotions of others. Reflecting on how emotionally intelligent you are, in combination with the other factors above, may also help you to choose certain careers or work settings.
  • A four-stage cyclical career planning process will can assist you in making career decisions throughout your time in College and afterwards:  Know Yourself, Explore Opportunities, Make Choices and Take Action. 

The following questions at each stage may help with this process:

Know Yourself

  • What do you want from your career?
  • What do you offer in skills, abilities and knowledge?
  • What am I interested in? What am I passionate about?
  • How would I describe myself? How might others describe me?
  • Am I open to new ideas and experiences? How curious am I?
  • How good am I at monitoring my own emotions and those of others?

Explore Opportunities

  • What jobs and employers are out there?
  • What sectors are hiring at the moment?
  • What aspects of my work experiences to-date have I enjoyed/not enjoyed? Why?
  • Who do I know in the working world who can help me?
  • Do I need a postgraduate qualification to get into this field?
  • What impact / contribution did I make in each of my experiences?

Make Choices

  • How do I tend to make important decisions?
  • Which career options are a priority for me? Why?
  • Do I have a contingency plan?
  • Who or what got me interested in this area?
  • What are the practical considerations that apply to me? e.g. budget, time, energy, location etc.

Take Action

  • Is my CV & LinkedIn profile well-tailored to my sector of interest?
  • When is the next drop-in CV Clinic?
  • Do I need to book a practice interview?
  • Which careers workshops will help me most?

(b) Guidance tools to aid your reflection

  • Skills Development - The development of transferable skills is important for students to succeed in the graduate labour market. Initially, to help you articulate what you have to offer and then to evidence to employers that you have what they seek in your CV and at interview. As your work life evolves continuous development of a range of skills will ensure you optimise your potential. The process of Plan-Do-Review will help you to identify, develop, articulate and transfer your key skills from one situation to another improving your employability
    • Complete a Skills Audit &, if you wish, an Action Plan to continue to consciously develop your skills
    • Develop Evidence that you have each skill critical for confidence building as well as in your CV and interview.
  • Destinations® (Only available to TCD students and graduates)
    • An online sequence of activities and exercises that lead Senior Fresh to Postgraduate students through the self-assessment and career planning process.
    • Accessible by TCD graduates of up to 3 years who must come to the Careers Service, 7-9 South Leinster St for access.
  • Prospects Career Planner identifies what jobs suit you based on your skills, motivations and desires and lets you access the latest vacancies in the UK immediately.
    • Identify what you want out of a job; generate new job ideas and check out your existing ones
    • Find out what motivates you in a job; identify your skills and what you can offer to the job/employer
    • See how these match the jobs you are considering
    • Research your chosen jobs in more detail, compare your options and decide on the right choices for you
    • Access the latest graduate jobs or training opportunities in your chosen occupations immediately and apply online

If there is anything you would like to talk over, get in touch with your careers consultant.



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What’s On?

Careers Report at is a great way to start brainstorming possible job suggestions for those who have no idea about what type of work they would like. It's based on your strengths, a useful exercise to boost your confidence and widen your perspective.

Orlaith TunneyCareers Adviser
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