My Story: 'I didn't want to do a course if I wasn't sure'
Ciara Gibbons Coyle
When Ciara Gibbons Coyle was considering her CAO options, she didn't know what career direction she wanted to take and felt many of the courses were too specific.
"I didn't want to commit to a course that I wasn't completely sure on," said Ciara of Moycullen, Co Galway, who is a former pupil of St Enda's, Salthill, Galway.
Originally she was interested in psychology, but the points tend to be very high and she still wasn't sure if she liked the subject enough to study it by itself.
"This then brought me to look at general arts in NUI Galway. I loved the fact that I was able to get a taste of multiple subjects before specialising.
"Students take three subjects in first year, reducing to two in second year."
Ciara opted for psychological studies because "after studying it in first year I knew for sure it was for me". Her other subject is philosophy.
"I really enjoy both these subjects and have found throughout my course that I've been very well supported and aided academically."
Ciara (20), who is now in her third and final year, loves being able to study human nature, "why we do things and how we have gotten to where we are in the world - both my subjects allow me to do this". She has strong advice for Leaving Certificate candidates who might be stressing over filling in the CAO form.
"Even though I am in my final year I remember the stress.
"I would say 'relax'. Don't fill out your CAO form on a points-based strategy - look at what it is that you really want to do, that's what matters."