shaping graduates for life and work in the 21st century - DCU

shaping graduates for life and work in the 21st century - DCU

DCU Graduate AttributesThe learning environment in DCU is designed to both challenge studentsand to support them in developing these personal attributes:Creative and EnterprisingDCU students are encouraged to be innovative in their approaches toproblem-solving. DCU graduates will be adaptable and willing to pursuenew ideas.Solution-OrientedDCU emphasises the use of evidence and understanding as guides toaction. DCU graduates will be adept at applying knowledge to issuesencountered in the workplace and in society.Effective CommunicatorsDCU motivates students to appreciate the importance of communicationin all its dimensions. DCU graduates will be able to draw on appropriateskills to negotiate effectively, to collaborate, and to influence others.Globally EngagedDCU encourages students to be locally and globally aware, tovalue tolerance and cultural diversity, and to be committed to civicengagement. DCU graduates will understand the importance ofengaging with their communities in an ethically responsible manner.Active LeadersDCU focuses strongly on the development of leadership skills. Graduateswill appreciate that it is their personal responsibility to take the initiativeand to effect change for the better in every walk of life.Committed to Continuous LearningDCU promotes a spirit of inquiry, reflection and evaluation. DCUgraduates will have learned that knowledge is not fixed or static, andthat insights and skills can always be deepened and developed.Aptitudes and proficienciesThe University believes that these overarching attributes can be acquiredeffectively through the development of a range of underpinning aptitudes andproficiencies which will be developed both through formal teaching and learningprocesses and through informal engagement with university lifeResearch and Inquiry:Students will be encouraged to draw on knowledge, concepts, methodsand theories and to understand how they can influence developments andthinking. They will be encouraged to question, evaluate and communicate inorder to improve their understanding of particular disciplines and fields.Intellectual Insight and Innovative Thinking:Students will be encouraged to develop a keen sense of the importance ofcritically evaluating, appraising and reflecting. They will be encouraged toembrace new knowledge and engage in broad debate, recognising whenresourcefulness and creativity are required in their approaches.Information Literacy:Students will be encouraged to develop a high level of information literacythat encompasses a sophisticated, considered and critical approach tosourcing, organising, evaluating and using information.Digital Intelligence:Students will be encouraged to be fully competent in their use and applicationof digital technology. They will be encouraged to interact intelligently with thedigital environment and to recognise the benefits of this to solve problems,to assess the credibility of information, to establish networks of authenticpartners and to create meaningful outcomes for society.Ethical and Professional StandardsStudents will be encouraged to develop a comprehensive understanding ofethical and professional standards as they engage with local, national andinternational communities of all disciplines and all cultures.Personal Awareness and DevelopmentStudents will be encouraged to self-appraise and to recognise both thepossibilities and the boundaries of their knowledge and capabilities. Theywill take responsibility for their personal development and seek expertadvice, where appropriate, to guide their decisions and actions.The Graduate Attributescan be acquired effectivelythrough the developmentof a range of aptitudes andproficiencies which willbe fostered both throughformal teaching and learningprocesses and throughinformal engagement withuniversity life4Interpersonal and Intercultural CompetenceStudents will be encouraged to enhance their interpersonal skills, to developan appreciation of intercultural issues, and to promote effective teamwork inenvironments of diversity.5

DCU INTRA Programme (INtegrated TRAining)8DCU was the first university toestablish a unique INTRA (INtegratedTRAining) programme, which givesour students the opportunity to gainrelevant work experience – as well asan early introduction to the world ofenterprise and employment.INTRA has been running for over 25years at DCU. In 2011, more than 800students from 26 undergraduateand 2 postgraduate programmescompleted INTRA placements,ranging in length from 2 to 12months, in over 1000 companies.How does INTRA help students?4 INTRA provides our studentswith an invaluable appreciationof the workplace environment4 The INTRA experience developsmaturity, confidence andrelationship skills4 INTRA generates valuableemployment opportunities;many DCU graduates return totheir original INTRA employer.4 INTRA results in increasedmotivation, providing studentswith an understanding ofthe relationship between theworkplace and the coursecurriculum4 INTRA students get paid for thework they do!How does it help employers?4 It provides a supply of highlymotivated young people4 It provides an opportunity toevaluate and train possiblefuture employees4 It offers an ideal opportunityfor employers and academicsto establish long-termrelationships and the potentialfor working together on projects4 It provides an opportunity forinvolvement in the developmentof graduates with the requiredkey skills essential to the Irisheconomy4 It helps to promote andreinforce a lifelong learningculture within an organisationthrough the establishment ofstrong links with a third levelinstitution.Carmel O’ConnorHR Partner, Pricewaterhouse Coopers“PwC has been involved in the INTRAprogramme for a number of years.We have always been impressed bythe calibre of students who take partin the INTRA programme; they arehighly motivated and keen to developnot just their professional skills butalso the interpersonal skills whichare essential for their future careers.Students who show drive, motivationand strong commercial awarenessskills during the programmewill often come to work withus as graduates.”Vicky Kavanagh3rd year Journalism student, currently on internship withthe Washington Ireland Programme (WIP), working withRichard Downes, RTÉ“During my 8 weeks in Washington DC as part of WIP, I havedeveloped important skills for my career and role as a leaderin the future. My awareness of my duty as a citizen of Irelandhas increased and I will return home passionate about thepositive changes I want to make in my country in the futurethrough my career in journalism. Working closely withRichard Downes has made me a better journalist. I wouldnever have applied for the Washington Ireland Programmeif it were not for the support I received over my three yearsat DCU which allowed my confidence to blossom. Academicachievements only provided part of my DCU experience;my extra-curricular achievements are what help set meapart from other students. I helped found the very firstJournalism Society at DCU, sat on its committee and servedas Deputy News Editor, Deputy Arts Editor and FeaturesEditor of The College View over my three years. It was acombination of all these things which helped mesecure a place on WIP.”9

Year abroadWork placements at DCU are notconfined to Ireland alone. As wellas periods of time overseas on theINTRA programme, students ondegree programmes run by theSchool of Applied Languages andIntercultural Studies will spendone full academic year at oneof DCU’s partner institutions inAustria, Belgium, China, France,Germany, Japan, Mexico andSpain. The Year Abroad allowsstudents to experience everydaylife in another setting, to meetstudents and lecturers from manydifferent places and to developa greater level of independence,intercultural sensitivity and valuableinterpersonal skills. Students aresupported in their Year Abroadstudies by an academic coordinatorin the School of Applied Languageand Intercultural Studies.Paul VanceHead of Resourcing, KPMG“Recruiting talented studentsfrom DCU is always a priorityeach year. As a leadinginternational professionalservices firm, we pride ourselveson the depth of talent andexpertise that we provide to ourclients. They demand the verybest service and advice fromKPMG people. To satisfy thisdemand, we recruit only the bestgraduates in the country. At entry,we demand that graduates mustbe academically excellent, havegreat business awareness and bewell-rounded individuals. Thesequalities are in abundance amongDCU students.”Ian KehoeGraduate of the BA in Journalism, reporter with RTÉ’sPrime Time programme, formerly chief news correspondentwith The Sunday Business Post“When I ponder back upon my college years, I don’t dwell on thelectures, the modules, the exams or even the degrees. For me, itwas all about arguing and stories. During my five years in DCU(four as an undergraduate followed by a masters), I devoteda massive amount of time and energy to both competitivedebating and college newspapers. As it turned out, those twinpursuits have helped me out almost as much in my subsequentcareer in the media as what I learned in the classroom.Debating taught me how to communicate and analyse complexissues, while working on the newspapers brought home thevalue of a story and the importance of a deadline. Gettinginvolved in societies and extracurricular provided me with thereal life skills to augment what I learned in lectures. Thoseskills were important when I was in college ten years ago.But in today’s economic climate, they are absolutely vital.“1011

Professor Brian MacCraithPresident, DCU“We need to makesure that we offerour students degreeprogrammes that willarm them with thecapabilities and theconfidence to succeedin whatever careerthey choose to do.”The DCU Enterprise Advisory BoardGeneration 21 has been developedin conjunction with the DCUEnterprise Advisory Board. TheBoard, which was formed in May2011, is made up of entrepreneursand leading figures from Irish andinternational business.The Board provides guidance on:4 Strategies that will enhanceDCU’s ability to deliver on itsmission as a ‘University ofEnterprise’4 The relevance of DCU’s portfolioof degree programmes and onemerging needs/opportunitiesfor new degree programmes4 Current and emerging skillrequirements for graduatesThe current membership of the EAB is:Craig Barrett, ex-CEO, IntelTony Donohoe, Head of Education, Social & Innovation Policy, IBECClare Duignan, Managing Director, RTÉ RadioMichael Kamarck, President, Merck BioVenturesMark Kellett, CEO, Magnet Networks LimitedJoyce Loughnan, CEO, Focus IrelandLiavan Mallin, CEO, Zalco InvestmentsCyril Maybury, ex-Partner, Ernst & YoungRegina Moran, CEO, Fujitsu IrelandPaula Neary, Partner, AccentureBarry O’Sullivan, Senior Vice-President, Cisco SystemsDeclan Ryan, Managing Director, Irelandia InvestmentsMargaret Sweeney, ex-CEO, PostbankPaula NearyPartner, Accenture4 Emerging enterprise trends andchallenges, which should informDCU’s research agenda“Encouraging innovation, entrepreneurship andleadership skills amongst graduates is key toIreland’s national economic recovery.”12 13

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