ucd social impact careers week for purpose graduate programme

For Purpose Attends UCD’s Social Impact Recruitment Week

For Purpose attended UCD’s Speed Networking Event on Wednesday 31st March, as part of their Social Impact Recruitment week. Over 260 students signed up for their Careers Week and we received significant engagement during our presentation.

Our For Purpose manager, Adrian, gave an overview of the For Purpose Programme and nonprofit sector. He highlighted the different career paths available to potential graduates through For Purpose.

Three of our For Purpose Graduates, Conall, Eilís and Emily, outlined what attracted them to the nonprofit sector. They also explained their role, what they have learned on the For Purpose programme and key tips for students interested in applying.

The session moved into individual breakout rooms with smaller groups of students for a Q&A discussion with the graduates. This provided students with a chance to ask the For Purpose graduates for any further tips.

Many students had questions surrounding the recruitment process and when to apply. Each question was answered by our For Purpose graduates in considerable detail, leaving the students with both an insight into For Purpose and the nonprofit sector.

If you would like For Purpose to attend your university’s Careers Event, please email Adrian McCarthy for more information.

Meet Our Grads For Purpose Graduate Programme Development Officer Ellen

Meet Our Grads

Introducing Ellen, who joined For Purpose as the Development Assistant for St. Conleth’s College in October 2019. Since her time with For Purpose, Ellen has continued her career with St. Conleth’s College as their Development Coordinator.



“As the Development Assistant, I worked really closely with the school’s CEO, Development Officer and Financial Controller with all things development and fundraising.”

Ellen discusses how one of her favourite things about the For Purpose Graduate Programme was that, “It really went beyond just finding roles for the graduates in the sector, we were given a lot of support and learning opportunities.”

The transition from college to full time work can be challenging. At For Purpose, we provide support and guidance to our graduates from day one.

To keep updated with the latest For Purpose updates, follow us on LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter.

gradireland live for purpose graduate programme 2021 virtual careers

For Purpose attends gradireland live

We are thrilled to announce that For Purpose will be attending gradireland live next Thursday 11th March.

The For Purpose Graduate Programme connects nonprofit organisations with passionate graduates. If you’re considering recruiting a graduate seeking purpose in their careerwe’ll be at grad fair next Thursday 11th March meeting this talented pool of graduates.

This is our third year attending gradireland’s careers event. Due to COVID-19, gradireland live will be held virtuallyInteractions will be on a one-to-one basis via a meeting room and ware also hosting a talk on ‘Careers in the Nonprofit Sector’.

The For Purpose Graduate Programme will be the only nonprofit programme present at the eventWe will be meeting some of Ireland’s top graduate talent amongst leading employers across the graduate programme landscape in Ireland.

Join us virtually to learn more about our For Purpose Graduate Programme, and how your organisation could benefit from recruiting an enthusiastic graduate.


Please contact Adrian.McCarthy@forpurpose.ie or direct on 087 910 3872 for more information.

for purpose learning seminar

For Purpose Graduates attend Learning Seminar with Teach Tearmainn

This week, the For Purpose graduates attended their first Learning Seminar of the year, with a presentation from Teach Tearmainn’s Manager, Lorraine Rowan.

The Learning Seminar benefited the graduates as they gained insight into the organisational strategy, mission and purpose of Teach Tearmainn. Furthermore, they participated in a Q&A with Lorraine. Connecting an industry professional with our For Purpose graduates deepened their understanding of non-profit organisations.

Teach Tearmainn provides free and confidential support services, information and emergency accommodation to women and children who are suffering from domestic violence and abuse in the Kildare and West Wicklow area.  Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been an upsurge in domestic violence in Ireland. Teach Tearmainn offers a 24/7 helpline, provides women and children with support groups, and much more.

Learning Seminars are one of the unique aspects of the For Purpose Graduate Programme, where we assist in the development of our graduates professional careers.


Rhona Wynne

Welcome to the team Rhonda!

Rhonda Wynne

For Purpose is pleased to announce that Dr Rhonda Wynne is joining the team as an associate.


Rhonda has worked in higher education for over twenty years, firstly in Boston, USA, and then at University College Dublin, where she led projects in adult education, lifelong learning and community engagement.  She is an accomplished higher education project manager with skills in research, strategic planning, policy advocacy, instructional design and teaching and facilitation.

Rhonda is now working independently as an education consultant and academic mentor.


Rhonda drew on her doctoral studies into how the civic role of universities is understood and practiced, to collaborate with Campus Engage, the Irish national network to promote civic and community engagement in higher education. She was the lead researcher and writer on the Campus Engage Charter for Civic Engagement and the National Framework for Measuring Community and Civic Engagement.  Her interest in this area was sparked by involvement with several European Grundtvig projects on Active Citizenship.


Throughout her career, Rhonda has taught widely in the field of adult education, and is an enthusiastic lifelong learner, recently completing a Diploma in Mental Health and Wellbeing Coaching.


In her role, Rhonda will assist with developing and positioning the For Purpose graduate programme.


Please join us in wishing Rhonda well in her new role. You can contact Rhonda on 087-9880554 or Rhonda.Wynne@2into3.com.

Building Capacity in a time of turbulence Case for Grad Programme

Building capacity in a time of turbulence – Webinar

Building capacity in a time of turbulence – the role a graduate programme can play, was the topic of a recent webinar hosted by The Wheel. Participating on the panel were Darren Ryan, CEO with Social Entrepreneurs Ireland, Gavan O’Brien, MD of gradireland, Angela Collins, Head of Careers Services at Waterford Institute of Technology and Adrian McCarthy, Programme Manager of For Purpose.

As Ireland continues to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic and its wider effects on society, all organisations both commercial and non-profit, are experiencing challenges in talent management. Against the backdrop of the dramatic changes over the past 8 months, this webinar highlighted these current and future challenges for non-profits.


Adrian McCarthy from For Purpose illustrated the framework for Talent Management for non-profits and the best practices, for building capacity in an organisation with graduates, during the pandemic. Against the backdrop of 83% of employers reporting Skills Shortages as being a major challenge for their organisation, the importance of strategic planning for talent management cannot be overstated (CIPD’s HR Practices in Ireland Survey 2020). Some organisations are actively managing their talent funnel, with 46% of employers planning to maintain or increase graduate recruitment this year (AHECA Graduate Market Survey 2020).


The benefits a graduate programme bring to an organisation were summarised as:

  1. The graduate is trained in your organisation’s way of working and culture, “grow your own
  2. Skill Development within the organisation and transfer of those skills
  3. Retention is higher when a graduate joins as part of a programme
  4. Capacity building of talent in the organisation, nurturing managers of the future.


Drawing from the experience of Social Entrepreneurs Ireland’s graduate intakes over the last couple of years, Darren Ryan, noted the quality of graduate applying to roles specifically advertised as graduate programmes is notably higher than those not. Recognising that talented people are what makes a real difference in all organisations, not only non-profits, Darren believes we can’t let the future of the sector up to chance. There is a need to develop, manage and attract top talent enabling the not-for-profit sector to make real impact into the future. Having a graduate programme in place facilitates the required mentoring and coaching of our future leaders of the sector.


Gavan O’Brien from gradireland stated graduate recruitment will certainly contract this year as a result of Covid 19. gradireland estimates there will be a 35% contraction based on the same period in 2019 of graduate roles across all sectors (private, public & not-for-profit). Some private sector graduate programmes, particularly in the tourism and hospitality sector have reduced their intake of graduates this year.

When comparing this period of uncertainty to previous economic downturns, the employers who closed their grad programmes experienced a negative impact on their future pipeline of graduates. Gavan said, “Those that closed their programmes, faced a very difficult task of reintroducing their brand to the students they wanted to engage with when they started hiring again.

Current Graduate programmes are for the most part, remotely on-boarding their new graduates, this move online is something that all organisations are managing for all new staff. Induction in terms of logistics and technology requires a new approach, for this year’s intake of graduates.


What can employers do to help their graduates adapt to the changing working environment? Angela Collins recommended that employers recognise their graduates have adapted and developed their skills so they could continue their education during Covid, left college in a period of uncertainty and have entered the world of remote working. Many will need a boost of confidence, look for a sense of belonging and connection, being part of a graduate programme would help these new graduates find their feet.


It was noted that other sectors receive state support to develop graduate programmes for example Enterprise Ireland for Irish enterprises, Bord Bia for Agri-food and IDA Ireland for Irish international businesses. There is a case to be made for similar state-funded support for the development of graduate capacity building in the not-for-profit sector.  A discussion on this topic has commenced with The Wheel and a number of organisations within the sector. If you are interested in helping to build this case for support, please contact Adrian McCarthy.


For a copy of the presentations or for more details please contact Adrian McCarthy 087 – 910 3872 adrian.mccarthy@forpurpose.ie

More about For Purpose programme

Delighted to be part of gradIreland Virtual Careers fair

Are you interested in a career with a sense of Purpose? Working in the Not-for-Profit sector can give you just that.

We are present at the gradIreland virtual careers fair today and tomorrow and are available to answer any questions you may have about the sector, our grad programme or the organisations you could work with.

Today Wed 30th Sept, we are hosting a talk at 4.20pm  about careers in the Not-for-Profit sector. Come meet the team: Adrian McCarthy,  Dennis O’Connor and Hannah O’Hare.

Completed Facilitated Training

Well done!

Covid19 Update

Over the next few weeks, here at For Purpose, we will be taking precautionary measures to help prevent the spread of Covid 19. We appreciate this is a difficult time and many of us are concerned for the health and safety of our colleagues, clients and our loved ones.
As a result, we will be delivering our services through the use of technology and are continuing to operate as normal with our staff working from home. Meetings, Workshops and Interviews can be held using For Purpose’s video conference software without our clients or candidates needing anything more than a phone. Social distancing will be observed to help keep everyone safe.

We will continue to work on all our projects and aim to deliver them as per agreed deadlines, we are taking the same approach with new projects, we are still working, just using online tools to minimise social contact.

We sincerely hope that you and your families stay safe and healthy over the coming weeks.

Queens University Grad Fair


Delighted to be in Belfast today at the Queens University Grad fair! Great to meet so many enthusiastic graduates looking a career with purpose in 2020.