01 September, 2021 | Posted by Cian Fahey

Options For Leaving Cert Students That Don’t Need CAO Points

Portobello Institute Leaving Cert Options

Today can feel like the biggest day of your life. And for many Leaving Cert students, it will feel like the biggest disappointment in your life if you didn't get the CAO points that you wanted.

But it doesn't have to be.

CAO points are not the only way to go to college and they are not the only way to do the course you want to do. There are plenty of ways to carve out the career that you have dreamed of having.

Most of us who have completed our college degrees and found success in our careers don't even remember what we got in the Leaving Cert.

We remember our college education experience instead.

You need to be educated and you need to qualify in your respective field to build your preferred career. But you don't need CAO points to build your career.

Education and qualifications of the highest level are available at Portobello Institute.

Portobello offers Level 8 and Level 9 degrees to Leaving Cert students but we don't have minimum CAO point requirements. You can apply directly to the college instead of having to go through the CAO system.

Furthermore, we don't limit our places.

Universities create scarcity and exclusivity by limiting the available places in their courses. If we have 10 students, we build a class for 10 students. If we have 1,000 students, we build classes for 1,000 students.

We make education accessible for everyone by not requiring CAO point minimums and by devising our courses to suit our student's needs.

In doing so, we do not devalue our degree programmes.

Portobello Institute offers internationally recognized degrees and has six different departments.

Our departments are Sports, Early Years, Facilities Management, Special Needs Assisting, Fashion and Travel & Tourism.

While being centrally located in Dublin City, our students are afforded the opportunity to live outside of Dublin and commute to classes should they need to. This is due to our condensed scheduling and Blended Learning delivery method.

You can pick the different delivery mode that best suits your life. Portobello understands that education is only a part of your life and not your whole focus.

For Leaving Cert students who want to live outside of Dublin, our condensed scheduling means they may only have to be on campus two days per week during the week. This allows them to save money on rent but it also makes it easier for our students to enjoy their social lives and find part-time employment.

If you have a full-time job, you can study on evenings and weekends through Blended Learning.

The appeal of Portobello’s structure and the quality of our degrees has led to some students choosing our courses even when they get the CAO points for their initial first choices.

Aoife Fleming is one of those students.

She chose to study Portobello Institute’s BSc (Hons) Sports Therapy degree because it opened more options for her in her career and because she could live in Kilkenny while studying full time in Dublin.

Aoife is known to our lecturers and programme administrators because Portobello looks after the one in everyone.

Universities and larger colleges tend to overlook the individual, losing them in the crowd. By building our schedules to suit our students needs and by hiring lecturers based on their expertise but also their ability to invest in and to engage with students, we have created a culture that facilitates learning.

Psychology student Aoife Scally found that out quickly when she arrived at our doors:

“It was a very positive experience for me. The people were just really, really helpful. They’re dealing with a lot of students and sometimes you feel like you’re asking a stupid question but you were never made feel like that.”

Going to college is an adult experience. Our lecturers don't hold our students hands the way their teachers might have.

But they also don't treat students coldly. They are always available and each student is given their own personal academic tutor who is available outside of class times. Our lecturers treat students like adults and engage them as peers.

Once they have graduated, they become peers and many of our past students have maintained relationships with the tutors today.

Not only does this help those students on their journeys, it sets up networking opportunities for those next students coming to Portobello.

Shannon Byrne, for example, graduated from Sports Therapy and set up her own clinic within one month. Within one year she had hired her first employee and taken on multiple Portobello students for work experience.

Her employee will be part of the 2021 Sports Therapy class beginning in October thanks to Shannon's recommendation.

College doesn't need to be a cold experience learning from strangers. Students thrive best when they are nurtured to do so. Adapting our classes to our students needs is just a logical step in setting everyone on the right path.

Portobello Institute offers you internationally recognized degrees in an environment that emphasizes accessibility and facilitates the best learning methods.

You can explore our six departments and their respective courses from this page.

If you have questions, you can fill in this contact form or contact one of our admissions team members directly:

  • Johanna Shaw is ready to answer all of your queries about Portobello's Sports courses. You can reach her on 01-892-0024 or email her at jo.shaw@portobelloinstitute.com.
  • Jennifer Matteazzi is read to answer all of your queries about Portobello's Early Years courses. You can reach her on 01-892-0031 or email her at Jennifer.Matteazzi@portobelloinstitute.com.
  • George Boylan is ready to answer all of your queries about Portobello's SNA and Fashion courses. You can reach him on 01-892-0041 or email him at George.Boylan@portobelloinstitute.com.
  • Brandon McLean is ready to answer all of your queries about Travel & Tourism as well as Facilities Management. You can reach him on 01-892-0035 or email him at brandon.mclean@portobelloinstitute.com

Each of our admissions team members can answer your questions about the application process and guide you to the course that you want. Today is not a day for panicking or disappointment.

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