As an Engineer for Meath County Council, Jerome Lambe’s day-to-day activities revolve around some design, procurement, tendering and supervision of contractors. But his role, which he has been in since 2014, would not have been possible without his decision in 2009 to go back to college part-time. At that time, Jerome was working as an engineering technician for Meath County Council which he had joined in 2003 from Fingal County Council. Jerome was keen to apply for the role of Engineer but such a move would not be possible without a degree so with the support of his employer, he arrived at DKIT to study part-time for the BSc (Hons) in Civil Engineering.
It was not Jerome’s first time to attend DKIT, he had completed his Higher National Diploma in 1997 there and good memories of it. Jerome said, “When you’ve been working for a while, it’s a different relationship with the lecturers in that they treated us more as colleagues than students. They understood and appreciated that the class before them often had extensive field experience which they themselves could absorb and be shared with their classmates. They were very encouraging and it was a really good time for me.”
Studying at DKIT opened Jerome’s mind to new ways of learning and encouraged him to move forward and upskill. “There was also a lot of change happening with the Engineer’s role at Meath County Council. There was an increased emphasis on Health and Safety and Procurement and I wanted to make sure I was up-to-speed in both areas when the time came to apply.”
He began studying for an MSSc in Occupational Health & Safety at Queens in 2011 and an MSc in Strategic Procurement at DCU a year later. Queens was one evening a week and DCU was a Friday and Saturday once a month with continuous assessment for both. He’d be the first to admit at one point he was a bit worried! Jerome said, “Driving back from DCU after I enrolled, the workload was very intense and I knew I was going to have to strategise to get through it. A skill I learnt in DKIT was time management and organisational skills which I quickly tapped into and generated a schedule for all my course work submissions which I shared with my classmates and I think is why I was voted Class Rep for both courses."
His efforts were rewarded when his application for the post of Engineer with Meath County Council in 2014 was successful. In addition to his many other duties Jerome is also Water Safety Development Officer for the county.
Jerome said, “To be honest, continuing education has changed my professional life but even more important than that it’s been a hugely positive influence on my three sons. It’s given them the confidence to achieve more in school. They all read extensively now and that I’m very proud to be a role model for them about the benefits of education and never to stop learning.”