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Special Needs

Irene Dequina

My name is Irene Dequina McNally. I am originally from the Philippines but I came to Ireland when I was 5 years old.

I am currently working as a childminder Monday to Friday and as an ABA specialist at the weekends.

What Programme did you study at Dorset College and why?

I studied Special Needs Assisting Level 5 and Special Needs Assisting Level 6 at Dorset College. As my passion is working with children with additional needs and I wanted to be in a position to do this full time.

From speaking to friends of mine who work in education I knew it was important to do both level 5 and level 6 courses in special needs assisting.

Why did you choose studying with Us?

When I started looking for somewhere to study I soon came across Dorset College. It ticked all of the boxes for me; a good name and a proven track record, somewhere close to my home and work, a wide range of courses in my chosen field and most importantly it was affordable.

There was also an option to do both courses intensively and back to back. I started the level 5 course in October and finished the level 6 course at the beginning of March. Most other places that offered the same courses didn’t give an option to do it in this time frame.

How was your experience studying at Dorset College Dublin?

My experience with Dorset College has been great.

The premises itself was easy to get to as it is well served by public transport. There was ample parking outside for the days I chose to drive. The building was always very clean and the rooms were heated (very important on a cold winter’s evening). The admin staff were friendly and always answered my queries quickly and efficiently. As for the two lecturers Nicola and Beverly; they really made the return to education a great experience for me.

The level 5 course with Nicola was a great starting point, she was approachable and helpful and she made learning again fun. She gave us the opportunity to discuss the content freely in class and really helped me grow in confidence. I cannot speak highly enough of the level 6 lecturer Beverly Mole. The wealth of knowledge that she possesses, her experience, and the way she delivers the content is phenomenal. She encouraged us to express ourselves freely and her sense of humour made all of the lectures enjoyable.

What three values do you think Dorset College offers on a professional and personal level?

Dedication: to the students and the staff

Knowledge: there was always someone in the office to help with questions and queries. The lecturers knew their stuff and weren’t afraid to answer difficult questions

Personal Growth: Dorset college encourages you to question and to put yourself out there. My self-confidence grew hugely during my time with you

What recommendation would you have for those who are thinking about studying with Us?

Do it!! You have nothing to lose and so much to gain. The staff are knowledgeable but more importantly approachable. From my experience the students came from all walks of life, different ethnic backgrounds, and a range of ages - this really enriched the classes and the learning.

How has your experience at Dorset College influenced your professional development?

My experience at Dorset College has been so good that I am already planning on enrolling in another course relating to my field of interest.

My experience to date has given me the confidence to do this safe in the knowledge that I will be doing so in a well-run, structured, and safe learning environment. I learned so much from the fantastic lecturers and I know I will utilise so much of this knowledge when I start working full time in a school.

Dorset College is…

An inclusive, welcoming, supportive learning environment. One that I am proud to have been enrolled in and one which I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend and endorse.

Irene Dequina
Special Needs
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