| 5.6°C Dublin

Recruitment starting for the Defence Forces


Guidance counsellor Aoife Walsh

Guidance counsellor Aoife Walsh

Guidance counsellor Aoife Walsh

During the February mid-term break, the Minister for Defence announced that the Defence Forces will be recruiting 860 personnel over all areas, including general operatives, cadets and apprentices.

During the February mid-term break, the Minister for Defence announced that the Defence Forces will be recruiting 860 personnel over all areas, including general operatives, cadets and apprentices.

Recruitment for army and naval general personnel has already begun. Army applicants must be aged between 18 and 25, while naval applicants should be between 18 and 27 on the closing date for applications, Wednesday April 5. Interested applicants should log on to military.ie and complete an application form. Applications may only be submitted online.

While no formal qualifications are required, candidates must undergo a fitness test, interviews, psychometric testing and a medical exam.

The recruitment competitions for cadetships and apprenticeships have not yet begun, but anyone interested should keep a close eye on military.ie for news of these.


Although the Defence Forces are not currently advertising cadetships, many school leavers and graduates will be looking forward to the beginning of that recruitment drive. The cadetship is the programme through which the Defence Forces recruit and train future officers for the army, navy and air corps.

Applicants for this programme should present with Leaving Cert results similar to the matriculation requirements for the National University of Ireland (NUI). These include a 'passing' grade in Irish, maths, English and a modern European language, as well as at least two 'honours' grades in higher level subjects and a 'pass' in another four subjects.

This is the only way for potential candidates to become an army officer. As part of the recruitment process, candidates will participate in psychometric testing, a fitness test, an interview and a medical exam.

While it is possible for school leavers to be successful, it is likely they will be competing with a large number of graduates. Therefore, if candidates find they are not recruited first time around, it may be helpful to complete a degree and reapply. An applicant who is recruited to this programme and who does not hold a third level qualification may be assigned to a third level course. Therefore, applicants should be open to third level study if applying for a cadetship. Apprenticeship

Under the Defence Forces apprenticeship scheme, successful applicants will be trained in a technical area, as well as defence training, over a four year period. Technical training takes place in third level colleges.

The Defence Forces are expected to launch a recruitment drive for aircraft technicians at some point in 2017. Aircraft technicians provide maintenance and servicing for weapons, equipment and aircraft.

It is likely that candidates will be required to be between the age of 18 and 21 and hold minimum Leaving Cert qualifications, which may include five 'passes' including English or Irish and maths and in any one of the following: physics, chemistry, engineering or construction. Students interested in any of the above opportunities should keep a close eye on the website, military.ie, for announcements. With 860 posts to be filled there are sure to be many interesting opportunities coming soon.

Aoife Walsh is a guidance counsellor at Malahide Community School, Co Dublin



Enrolment Day - Ballsbridge College of FE

Open Evening - Bray Institute of FE

Education/Careers Fair -Templemore College of FE


Teagasc Open Day - Ballyhaise Ag College

Teagasc Open Day - Botanic Gardens

Open Day - Moate Business School

Open Day - Westport College of FE

March 10

Open Day - Carlow Institute of FE

Teagasc Open Day - Clonakilty Ag College

March 11

n Open Day - Pulse College Dublin & Galway

March 13

Particle Physics Masterclass - UCD

March 14

Open Day - Killester College of FE

March 15

Teagasc Open Day - Gurteen Ag College

Q. I am a Leaving Cert student and recently I have been feeling more and more stressed. It feels like there is not enough time to finish everything that needs to be done and I am falling behind on work. I have begun to feel anxious when I think about everything I have to do. Is there anything I can do to manage this?

A. Exam stress can become a real problem. Learning to manage stress is a life skill with which many adults still struggle, but there are a number of things a student can do to help them get through this immediate challenge. Some stress is good, as it helps us to keep our focus.

If you begin to experience the physical symptoms of stress, try not to think of this as a negative. Instead, try to remind yourself that this is simply your body preparing to meet the challenge ahead.

Try not to think about everything you must do before June; focus on what you need to do today and remind yourself that every little bit of study you get done could earn you extra points in the Leaving Cert.

Take care of yourself. We must manage our physical and mental health in order to do our best. Ensure you eat healthily, exercise and get enough sleep. Try to take time every day to relax properly and switch off. I hope this helps, but, if stress becomes overwhelmng, you may wish to speak to your guidance counsellor or seek some professional advice.

Irish Independent