Cathal Fenlon, Wexford
I decided to do the Higher Certificate in Engineering in Agricultural Mechanisation (Level 6) course as I had a keen interest in Agriculture and most importantly Machinery. There was a good balance between practical instruction and the theory side of the course. I gained a great base to start my career at Salesian Agricultural College Pallaskenry and gained confidence in operating and maintaining farm machinery.
For my project I fabricated a bearing press this gave me the opportunity to put both theory and practical learning into use. I had to produce drawings for the project using Autocad and I also got to help out with a wide variety of other projects.
I also felt that practical learning period was very beneficial as I done my placement with Templetouhy Fam Machinery in Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford. I gained a lot experience in servicing and repairing John Deere tractors and combines.
After completing this course I got the opportunity to undertake an apprenticeship with Templetouhy Farm Machinery Enniscorthy.
I would highly recommend this course as the work placement gave me an insight into what it was like to work in a garage and I learned that this was the career I wanted to pursue.
Brendan Ryan, Oola, Co. Limerick
I did the the Advanced Certificate in Agriculture (Dairy Herd Management) course in Salesian Agricultural College because I have had a great interest in dairy farming since I was very young. Growing up on a dairy farm, I knew there was only one thing I wanted to do for the rest of my life so this course was ideal for me.
I really enjoyed the practical side of the course, being out on the farm, getting hands on experience working with stock and machinery. The two placements were a real highlight for me, working with some of the best farmers in the sector and knowing they are people I can call on for advice or support down the line.
Some of the key things I learned during my time in Pallaskenry were good animal husbandry skills, good communication skills and working as part of a team.
After Pallaskenry, I went on to do the Professional Diploma in Dairy Farm Management in Moorepark, through which I met some great people and got to complete work placement in New Zealand.
I am now the farm manager here in the Salesian Agricultural College, whilst also farming alongside my family at home.
Advice I would have for possible students in the future would be to get stuck in, make the most of your time here and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
David Doyle, Wexford Town, Co. Wexford
I completed the Higher Certificate in Engineering in Agricultural Mechanisation (Level 6). I found the balance of theory in the morning and practical in the evening excellent. Being able to combine this with getting my green cert was really the selling point for me.
I am currently completing the Bachelor Degree of Engineering in Agricultural Engineering (Level 7). This is an add-on to Level 6 course.
I really enjoyed the trips we went on, to the likes of McHale and LAMMA. I also thoroughly enjoyed doing the practical project. I made a flat 8 bale grab for small square hay bales. I loved the accomplishment of actually being able to use something that I made.
Some of the big skills I learned during my time here were definitely learning to weld as I had never welded before. I also loved the operating of different machines such as the combines and harvesters and learning to strip down machinery.
I plan to continue my education to Level 8 by going on to IT Tralee doing the International Agri Engineering course or the Process Engineering course in LIT. In the long term I would hope to be working with a manufacturing company.
My advice to future students would be to get involved with the sports teams, and get involved on the farm.
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