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Trinity College Dublin

Trinity Employability Award in partnership with Intel Ireland

Trinity Employability Award

The Trinity Employability Award is an initiative that seeks to recognise and further develop the skills and competencies that students need to enhance their employability. The initiative aims to engage employers and industry as partners in preparing students for the ever changing challenges of the 21st century workforce, and Intel Ireland is the first industry partner to support this initiative as part of a two-year feasibility study.  

The initiative is open to Junior Sophister students in the Schools of Engineering, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Computer Science and Statistics.  The outcome of the study will inform a College wide structure for the implementation of the Trinity Employability Awards for all undergraduate disciplines.



This new award is the result of a unique collaboration between Trinity College Dublin and Intel. It is open to Junior Sophister students from the Schools of Engineering, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Computer Science and Statistics. It provides an invaluable opportunity to increase your 'career readiness’ by helping you articulate the competencies  achieved as part of your academic programme and equipping you with a set of specific employability skills to help you succeed in the workplace.

Combined with a focus on the Trinity Graduate Attributes, the award will give you the skills to help you secure a job in the engineering and technology sector.  The series of workshops will give you the opportunity to use problem-solving methodologies and apply your learning to work-related situations.  They will further enhance your personal and professional development through experiential learning, critical-thinking and help to ensure you develop the attributes you need to excel in your career.

All participants who successfully complete the full Employability Award programme will receive a certificate of recognition. Two overall winners will receive a cash prize of €2.5k and an Intel powered device.

  • Participate in a specialist curriculum which develops the skills and graduate attributes you need to succeed in your academic studies and your future career
  • Develop practical skills that translate to the workplace and make you more attractive to future employers
  • Learn to market and articulate your employability skills to potential employers during the job application and interview process
  • Reflect on your academic, extra-curricular and work-related activities and how they differentiate you in the graduate marketplace
  • Think, communicate, grow and lead in a unique programme setting
  • Understand the close alignment of academic and industry requirements in order to improve your employability and readiness for the working environment
  • Visit Intel, a world-class semiconductor manufacturing facility at Leixlip.

The award is open to Junior Sophister students at Trinity in the following Schools:

  • School of Engineering
  • School of Mathematics  
  • School of Physics
  • School of Chemistry
  • School of Computer Science and Statistics

Places on the award programme are limited to a maximum of 50 participants in 2016 / 2017

The award involves a number of elements. In order to achieve the award standard, you will need to participate in:

  • 30 hours of extra-curricular activities – see list of approved activities below
  • 1x4 hour “Make it Count” workshop delivered by the Trinity College Careers Advisory Service and Student Learning Development Unit
  • 1x8 hour workshop on Model Based Problem Solving, delivered by Intel
  • 1 of either 1x4 hour workshop on Statistics for the Real World or 1x4 hour workshop on LEAN Management, delivered by Intel.

The required 30 hours of activity must fall under a category on this list. If you plan to engage in an extra-curricular activity that does not fit in the list below, please contact us at and we will let you know if it can be considered.

Your 30 hours of extra-curricular activity can take place in:

  • Student societies registered with Central Societies Committee
  • Trinity Sports clubs
  • Volunteering with a registered charity or as part of a Trinity initiative, e.g. S2S mentoring, VDP homework club
  • Student representation – SU, class representative
  • Enterprise e.g. business challenge, SMF, Launchbox, Launchpad
  • Social enterprise
  • Internships (not those undertaken as a course requirement)
  • Part time work

All activities must be verifiable and supported by a reference.

Model-Based Problem Solving (MBPS) – 8 hour workshop @ Intel

  • Learn to understand the business need for problem solvers because as technology becomes more complex, companies need increasingly skilled problem solvers.
  • Learn Problem Solving Tools and Problem Solving Processes.
  • Learn how to segment problems, ask the right questions, interpret the data and identify solutions using the Model Based Problem Solving Process.
  • Learn to practice problem statement writing, segmentation and model building on a live example.


LEAN – 4 hour workshop @ Intel

  • Learn to appreciate the importance of LEAN as a basic requirement in all industries.
  • Learn how LEAN methodologies help you to prioritise tasks correctly and reduce ‘unnecessary work’ so that you can work efficiently.
  • Learn the importance of LEAN in an industry environment whilst competing against the clock to build your own model-car using theoretical principles.


Statistics for the Real World – 4 hour workshop @ Intel

  • Learn the importance of statistics in data driven scenarios.
  • Gain a sound understanding and application of basic statistics and how it is essential to careers in this age of ‘Big Data’.
  • Learn how to collate and interpret data using systems and Statistical Process Control - industry applications used to make decisions and solve problems.


Make it Count:  4 hour workshop @Trinity College Dublin, delivered by the Careers Advisory Service and Student Learning Development

  • Learn to differentiate between critical thinking and how it differs from descriptive thinking.
  • Learn to identify the different stages of critical thinking and evaluation using the Critical Thinking Model (University of Plymouth).
  • Learn how to reflect on, identify and articulate your skills and attributes, and apply critical thinking strategies to extra-curricular experiences, setting goals and reflecting on competencies and skills developed.
  • Become familiar with the core competencies employers look for when recruiting.
  • Learn how to outline your employability skills in written applications and at interview.



This award seeks to recognise and further develop the skills and competencies that students need to enhance their employability. Employability is defined as:

“A set of achievements –skills, understandings and personal attributes- that make individuals more likely to gain employment and be successful in their chosen occupations, which benefits themselves, the workforce, the community and the economy ” Yorke & Knight (2006)

“Employability is not just about getting a job. Conversely, just because a student is on a vocational course does not mean that somehow employability is automatic. Employability is about more than developing attributes, techniques or experience just to enable a student to get a job, or, to progress within a current career. It is about learning and the emphasis is less on ‘employ’ and more on ‘ability’. In essence, the emphasis is on developing critical, reflective abilities, with a view to empowering and enhancing the learner” Harvey (2003)

This award initiative aims to engage employers and industry as partners in preparing students for the challenges of the 21st century workforce.

As a participating student in this programme, you will have completed the following:

  • 30 hours of extra-curricular activities and experiential learning
  • 4 hours of workshops on Job Search and Reflective Learning
  • 12 hours of Intel-delivered workshops on Model Based Problem Solving and either Statistics for the Real World or LEAN.


Award Assessment:
The aim of the award assessment is to enable you to reflect on, integrate, and articulate the learning you have achieved from participating in this programme. We also want to celebrate and share this learning with a broader audience in an accessible and creative way through showcasing your submissions at a celebratory prize-giving event which will take place on the evening of the 5th of April 2017. 

The assessment has two components: 

  • A 500 word reflection where you integrate and articulate the learning you have achieved from across this programme.
  • A photograph of an image that represents your achievement of a single graduate attribute as a result of this programme, accompanied by a title and a narrative of no longer than 250 words.


Here's a short podcast explaining the assessment criteria


All submissions will be showcased at the celebratory event on the 5th of April.

The programme will be assessed on a Pass/Fail basis.

Pass: The reflections (500 word reflection and separately a 250 word narrative to accompany photograph) show a real sense of the journey to and achievement of the narrator’s personal and professional learning and insights as a result of this programme.  The reflections are analytical and integrative, connecting personal learning to employability and graduate attributes.

Fail: The reflection doesn’t move beyond basic description and there is little evidence of reflection on the learning from the programme.  



  • Reflection:  Write a 500 word reflective piece outlining your reflections on how you have developed your employability and Trinity Graduate Attributes throughout the programme. The focus should be on your development, not on achieving perfection. You can draw on your experience at the Trinity and Intel workshops, as well as on your extra-curricular activity. Clearly explain how you feel that you have developed skills and Trinity Graduate Attributes through participating in the programme, and how you feel this experience has enhanced your employability, as defined above. The aim is to clearly outline that you have reflected on your experience, and to demonstrate your ability to articulate the ways in which the experience has enhanced your graduate attributes.
  • Photograph: Take a photograph of an image that represents your achievement of a single graduate attribute.  Use a phone or a camera – you won’t be judged on the quality of the photograph but it will be enlarged for the showcase so it should be at least 6 mega pixels in size.  Be as creative as you can in the image you choose, but please note that you are not allowed to take photographs in Intel. Give the photograph a title. Using the photograph as a catalyst, reflect on your experience of this programme. Write a brief narrative (no longer than 250 words) to accompany the photograph that tells the story of the image.

    Here are samples of photographs students have submitted for assessment in different contexts. Please note that it is not the quality of the photograph that is key, but rather the way in which you explain how it illustrates your experience and graduate attributes.


When writing your narrative, consider some of the following:

  • Why did you choose the image?
  • What do you see in it?
  • How have you achieved this attribute?

To aid you in your reflection you might also consider some of these questions:

  • Why is it important and what does it mean to you?
  • How does this image represent or synthesise your learning from the programme?
  • What does it say about you and your learning?
  • How has the programme informed your beliefs and practices about employability?
  • How has it influenced your future role, as someone transitioning into employment? 

The Award

  • Those who successfully complete the Trinity Employability Award will receive a certificate of achievement
  • All eligible participants will enter into the competition for the Award prizes
  • There will be a prize of a tablet for six finalists, and two of these will be awarded the top prize of €2,500 each.

Closing date and showcase details

Important dates:

  • 24th March at 5pm – submission deadline
  • 5th April – Evening – Award showcase, assessment and prize giving event


How to submit:
To enter your submission for the award, please send the following documents by email to Marielle at by 5pm on Friday 24th March:

  • Part 1: Your 500 word reflection
  • Part 2: Your Photograph and accompanying narrative up to 250 words. Paste your photo as a ‘picture’ into an MSWord document and also provide in that document:
    • Your name
    • Title of photograph
    • 250 word accompanying narrative
  • Part 3: A copy of your reference(s) confirming that you have completed the required 30hours of extra curricular activity. If you took part in multiple activities to reach the 30 hours, please submit separate references for each activity.

Send the MSWord file by email, along with the original photo as a separate TIFF or Jpg file.



To apply for the award, send an email to with the following details:

  • Your full name
  • Your student number
  • Your course title
  • Your mobile phone number
  • Your workshop preference, either LEAN or Statistics for the Real World


Applications are now closed for 2016/17.


We will get in touch with you by email to let you know the status of your application in the week following the closing date.

Friday 21st October 5pm: Deadline for expression of interest
Friday 28th October:   Receive notification of registration status
October 2016-March 2017: Participate in 30 hours of extra-curricular activity
Week of 7th November
(Reading Week MT):     
Careers Advisory Service and Student Learning Development workshop
Week of 27th February
(Reading Week HT) 
Intel workshops
Friday 24th March 5pm  Deadline for assessment submission
Wednesday, 5th April 2017:  Award showcase, assessment and prize giving event

There may be minor adjustments to this timeline.

Trinity Employability Award - Information Session

Wednesday 12th October 2016 | 5.00 - 6.00pm | MacNeill Lecture Theatre 3

Speakers from the Careers Advisory Service and Intel will explain the Award structure, give a brief overview of content of the award workshops, and be on hand to answer any questions.

Download the presentation (pdf)


If you have any questions about the award you can send them by email to and we will reply as soon as possible.

For the purpose of the award, you will need to send us confirmation from your referee that you undertook the 30 hours of activity. If you are combining several activities to reach the 30 hours, you’ll need to submit a reference for each of these.

What’s required?

There’s no need for the person to comment on the work you did or how well they feel you did, we simply require confirmation that you did the hours. We will need this along with your referee’s name, job title, email address and phone number, as we’ll be calling some of them on a randomly selected basis.

How do I submit my reference(s)?

You can provide this confirmation of hours in one of two ways:

  • Ask the referee to send an email confirming those hours, along with their contact number and their job title/role to by 5pm on Friday March 24th
  • Send a reference written on the organisation’s headed paper as an attachment to , or drop a hard copy on headed paper into the Careers Advisory Service, by 5pm on Friday March 24th

Who can give me a reference?

Your referee should be someone you were reporting to in your 30 hours’ activity e.g. your boss in a part time job or volunteering role.

References if your 30 hours were in a society:

  • If you are not the society chair, the society chair can be your referee.
  • If you are the society chair, Emma Matthews in the CSC can provide sign off, you can email her at .

References if your 30 hours were as a class representative:

  • We suggest that you ask the EMS convener, or the TDCSU Education Officer, to sign off on these hours.



Contact Us

What’s On?

The Careers Service always listened to the views of students and were always very friendly. The individual advice as well as the CV and job search workshops were very helpful.

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