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CIT Host The Learning Workplace Breakfast

CIT Host The Learning Workplace Breakfast

01 October, 2019

On Thursday, September 26, CIT hosted the Learning Workplace Breakfast, a Cork Learning City event showcasing successful transferable workplace learning partnerships. 

The event was attended by representatives from business and industry in the Cork area, who heard presentations on the diverse range of learning interactions that are possible between education providers and workplaces.

Organisations that are evolving as ‘Learning Workplaces’ enjoy better staff retention and satisfaction levels, enhanced ability to diversify and increased profits and profitability. These sentiments were echoed by the presenters at the event, who shared their diverse personal stories.

Sergeant Lisa Walsh has spent 18 years in the Defence Forces, building up a huge skillset through workplace learning and training but without any formally recognised qualifications. The TOBAR project provided Lisa with the opportunity to formally recognise the breadth and depth of her knowledge through Recognition of Prior Learning.

To date, Lisa has successfully achieved nine QQI Level 6 awards with Cork Education Training Board and intends to return to complete 3 more. She hopes her now advanced skill set will serve as a stepping stone in pursuing a programme in Higher Education. The structure and flexible nature of the programme enables participants to continue their learning while working full time and managing a busy family life.

Phil Cone from Academy Crests shared his experience of attending a Lean for Micro programme run by LEO Cork. The programme gave him the skills to examine his business operations and identify improvements in processes and efficiency.

Since completing the course, he has made substantial changes to his business operations, including implementing a four day week for staff while maintaining production levels. These changes have led to significant business cost savings, which he attributes to the learning opportunities offered by LEO Cork, concluding that ‘the difference between success and failure, is your willingness to learn’.

Ronan Emmett, Learning & Talent Acquisition Manager at Boston Scientific, spoke about the benefits of having a strategic education partner. He outlined a number of programmes developed in partnership with CIT’s Department of Organisation and Professional Development and emphasised how investment in staff development contributes to increased staff morale and retention of staff and business intelligence.

Other presenters at the event included Dave Barry, IT@Cork Skillnet; Alan Crowe, Boston Scientific; Ita Madden, Cork LEO; Deirdre Goggin, CIT; Peter Maloney, Leisureworld; David Heelan, DuPuy; Tony Daly, Pfizer; Lyndsey El Amoud, UCC and Larry Finnegan, Defence Forces (retired).

Ciarán Lynch, Cork ETB, said the main purpose of the event was to demonstrate examples where both businesses and education partners work together to create a more sustainable business approach. “Many of the cases cited here this morning are examples that other companies in attendance can buy into,” he said.

Denis Barrett, Cork Learning City Co-Ordinator said the event had grown since last year with a bigger number of companies from various sectors in attendance. “This is an evolving process and we’d like to see other settings take up the same idea. There are so many good news stories out there, good practice examples and this morning was just a few of them.”

More information on Cork Learning City initiatives is available here

Professor Irene Sheridan, CIT Extended Campus and Denis Barrett, Cork Learning City Co-Ordinator. Photo: Brian Lougheed.  











L-R: Dr Séamus Ó Tuama, Director of ACE at UCC; Deirdre Creedon, CIT Access Officer and Dr Áine Ní Shé, CIT Registrar & Vice President for Academic Affairs (Acting). Photo: Brian Lougheed