17 August, 2023 | Posted by Jenny Smith

Why Choose a Career in Early Childhood Care and Education?

Every day, parents and caregivers entrust early childhood professionals with a profound responsibility—the education and care of their youngest family members.  

Choosing a career in ECCE offers a unique opportunity to shape the future of our society by influencing the early years of a child's life. But why should you consider a career in this vibrant and rewarding field? 

Making a Difference in the Early Years 

ECCE is a crucial period in a child's life. It's a time of rapid cognitive, physical, social, and emotional development. As an early childhood educator, you have the chance to spark curiosity, foster empathy, and build a foundation for lifelong learning in children. Your influence can ignite a love for learning and positively impact a child’s future academic and personal success. This opportunity to make a significant impact makes a career in ECCE deeply rewarding. 

Portobello Institute BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies graduate, Fiona Kavanagh, changed her career from accounts management to follow her passion for early years education.

“Studying with Portobello allowed me to achieve my dream of opening my own early years setting and this is something of which I am very proud.

“I now own and manage a full daycare setting. I was able to pursue my dreams and that is worth everything in my opinion. I am content and happy working in the early years sector. My qualifications ensure I have an in-depth knowledge of early childhood care and education,” she said.

A Profession of Growing Importance 

In today's rapidly evolving world, the importance of quality early education is more recognised than ever before. Research has highlighted the significant long-term benefits of ECCE, leading to increased investments in this sector. Choosing a career in ECCE puts you at the forefront of a field that is gaining momentum and recognition. 

Diverse Roles and Settings 

A career in ECCE is far from monotonous. It offers a wide range of roles, from educators and administrators to consultants and policy advisors. You could work in various settings like preschools, daycare centres, family homes, or even in policy development at governmental organisations or inspectorates. This diversity brings exciting challenges and opportunities for growth and career progression. 

Continuous Learning and Development 

ECCE is a field that encourages continuous learning—not just for the children, but for the educators too. It's a profession where you can continuously develop and refine your skills. It's a field where creative thinking, problem-solving, and adaptability are highly valued. Moreover, the joy and wonder of seeing the world through a child's eyes can bring a fresh perspective to your own life. 

Strong Job Outlook and Career Progression 

With the growing recognition of the importance of early education, there's a rising demand for qualified early childhood professionals. This trend suggests robust job prospects and opportunities for career advancement in the sector. With experience and further qualifications, professionals can move into management roles, policy development, or even start their own early learning centres. 

Portobello Institute graduate, Kellie Duggan, has been promoted to Curriculum Manager/Department Head at Durham Further Education College, while still managing several preschools in Ireland since gaining her MA in Early Childhood Studies.

“My MA has been highly regarded by employers and has played a significant role in securing a Curriculum Manager/Head of Department role ultimately advancing my career much sooner than anticipated," she said.

The Joy of Working with Children 

Perhaps one of the most rewarding aspects of a career in ECCE is the sheer joy of working with children. There's an unparalleled sense of fulfilment in witnessing their progress, their discoveries, and the world unfolding before their curious eyes. Their laughter, their imagination, and their boundless energy can make every day an adventure. 

More Than Just a Career 

A career in Early Childhood Care and Education is more than just a job—it's a passion. It's about shaping futures, making a difference, and leaving a lasting impact on the lives you touch. If you have a love for learning, a desire to make a meaningful difference, and a passion for nurturing the next generation, a career in ECCE could be the fulfilling path you've been searching for. 

Read more to discover early childhood care and education as a career path.

Portobello Institute offers qualifications in early childhood from levels five to nine including Certificate in Early Learning & Care – QQI Level 5 Major AwardAdvanced Certificate in Early Learning & Care – QQI Level 6 Major AwardBA (Ord) Early Childhood Care & EducationBA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies and MA Early Childhood Studies. 

If at any point you are interested in inclusive education, a BA (Ord) Inclusive Education Practice, BA (Hons) Inclusive Education Practice and MA Inclusive Education and SEN are also available. 

If you are interested in any of our early years or inclusive education programmes, you can book a consultation call with our expert advisor, Jennifer Matteazzi, email jennifer.matteazzi@portobelloinstitute.com or call 01 892 0031. 

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