My name is Katie Shannon Walsh and I am an Executive Assistant in The Dock which is Accenture’s Global Innovation Hub.
My career to date has certainly not been straightforward. When I was 16 I spent a full term in a Normandy boarding school. I loved the French language and thought it would be my choice for third level and I always loved the idea of becoming an interpreter in the EU.
I started in UCD to study French and Spanish. Only weeks into the course I realized my choice was wrong for me. Looking back I see now I should have sought advice and changed courses but instead I dropped out.
McDonalds drive thru restaurant wanted staff and I signed up to give me time to think of my next move. Then the opportunity to work in the 98FM promotion team came my way and a short time in the retail trade also.
I became aware of a course in Blackrock Further Education Institute for Beauty and Body Therapy which was always an interest of mine as I loved and still do love all things beauty and make up related so I decided to take this course. At the end of the year I passed with flying colours. A few weeks later I landed a dream job as a beauty therapist on a cruise ship. Within weeks I was promoted to Spa Manager.
I enjoyed life at sea and visited 48 countries. However for me it wasn’t real life and I had no third level qualification which I knew I did want to achieve one day.
Back home I worked in Audi and briefly for a beauty brand and even for an events company all of which taught me a lot and I wouldn’t be where I am today without all of that experience.
Word of mouth – through a friend – I heard Accenture were hiring and I applied and was hired. I had already enrolled in an evening course for a Diploma in Marketing in Dublin Business School. This course was demanding but again I passed with flying colours and had the piece of paper.
Finally after a lot of thought and consideration last month I enrolled in National College of Ireland to study a part time degree in Human Resource Management and it is my aim to get a career in HR in the coming years.
One piece of advice I would give my younger self is to seek advice early when in university, if the course is not a good fit for your personality. It is a hell of a lot harder to study part time and to be working full time. And always remember, it is never too late to start studying and achieve your goals.
Here’s to an exciting few years of putting my best foot forward and fingers crossed I start my career in HR very soon.