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International House Galway: Job Opportunities for students in Galway

  Publisher : Lynne   22 February 2022 00:00

Ireland’s study-work programme offers students the incredible opportunity to gain valuable work experience while they study English. Working while studying allows students to fully immerse themselves in the English language and use it in a practical (and profitable) way. The type of work available to students will depend on their English first and other skills second. The best opportunities will be offered to the students with the best English skills, and those who display the most commitment to their English learning by attending classes and dedicating time to self-study. However, no matter their level, they will have no problems finding work once they arrive. Galway is a city with enough opportunities for everyone who chooses to make it their home, regardless of the length of their stay.

What Jobs are Available?

Non-EU students taking part in a work-study programme are only permitted to work part-time, meaning they can work up to 20 hours per week (or 40 hours during holiday periods). Employers are aware of this arrangement and are generally quite accommodating towards work-study students. The type of work available to students varies. Most of the work opportunities are in the hospitality area with many students finding work in restaurants, hotels, bars and cafes. Recent work-study students have found work as chefs, waitresses, night porters, bartenders, accommodation assistants, cleaners and delivery personnel, to name just a few positions. Further employment opportunities will become available once students progress with their English level. Some students have even found work relevant to their university degrees. Galway is also home to several multinational companies such as Boston Scientific, EA Games, SAP and Medtronic, which may be able to offer employment or work experience upon application.

Where and How to Apply

In many ways, Ireland is still quite traditional when it comes to how employers advertise vacant positions. Advertisements can be found posted in shop windows around the city or in local newspapers. Students are advised to apply in-person to shops with advertisements in the window (unless they are directed otherwise). The Galway Advertiser is a free newspaper which publishes job advertisements on a weekly basis and is often delivered free of charge to addresses across the city. For advertisements which appear in a newspaper, applicants are usually given a phone number to call or an email address to send their CV and/or a cover letter to. There are also a number of Facebook groups where students can find details of job vacancies or even post their own availability for employers to see. and are national job databases that can be used to apply directly to companies using a CV and/or cover letter. Of course, LinkedIn is also an option for students to advertise themselves or reach out to companies directly. For extra opportunities, students should also keep up-to-date with the different festivals and events happening in the city which often hire temporary staff to service their events.

How to Get the Job

Ireland, like any country, has customs and codes of behaviour in the workplace. These codes and customs are important to know both before you apply and during the application process. For example, when applying in-person, students should make sure to dress their best and be prepared for an on-the-spot interview. It is not uncommon for the person at the front desk to be the manager or owner of the establishment. Students should be friendly in these situations and may need to make polite small talk. Social skills are important for most roles within the hospitality sector, so it’s a good idea to showcase these abilities right away. In addition, the Irish are very sociable people who value individuals they can have a decent conversation with. The most popular topic for small talk in Ireland is the weather. When in doubt, one can always comment on the rain or the welcome appearance of the sun.

If students are expecting to find a job quickly, they should invest in a black shirt, black pants and a pair of comfortable black shoes. This is recommended as the dress code for most jobs (especially in the hospitality sector) is all black. If applying in-person, students should be aware that weekends are extremely busy for places like hotels, bars and restaurants. As a result, it is advisable for applicants to apply on a weekday when they will have a better chance to speak to the manager or person in charge.

Lastly, students should respect the formality of the workplace, especially during the application process. During an interview students should speak respectfully and politely. Similarly, when writing an email to a potential employer, they should use formal language with appropriate greetings and sign-offs. However, on the other hand, once students have started their new job they shouldn’t be too surprised to hear employees referring to their boss by their first name. Once a relationship has been established in the workplace, this kind of address is perfectly normal.

IH Galway - Job Club

If that wasn’t enough, IH Galway also runs a Job Club that helps students find work in the city. The Job Club includes a number of useful services, including CV writing workshops, and can offer students advice regarding interview etiquette and understanding essential work documents, such as payslips. We also update students regularly on new vacancies in the area and recommend them to local businesses and employers. We know that starting a new job in a strange country can be difficult, which is why we are always on hand to help students with whatever questions and doubts they may have.

Ready To Work!

With the right information at their disposal students should have no problems finding the perfect job to suit their work-study needs. Galway is always welcoming to students of different nationalities who want to achieve their goals. With the right attitude and a good work ethic, students can earn while they learn.

So let’s start sending out those CVs!

Download our Study/Work Handbook.

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