After nearly nine years of study at WIT, Dr Noel Connors, who graduated with a PhD having started on a level 7 course in 2012 knows WIT inside out
Noel Connors is a past pupil of De la Salle Waterford and studied at WIT from 2008-2012 as an undergraduate business student, he completed his MBS in 2012-2013 and spent 2014-2018 working on his PhD before graduating in November 2018. His first year in college saw him being called up to the Waterford senior hurling team. Here he discusses his educational journey, his love for the comraderie and community of WIT.
Why did you choose to study at WIT?
A reputable Business School, with leading academics in the field; whilst it also facilitated my life beyond the classroom.
What was your experience?
An incredibly personal journey. All the staff within the Institute enabled me to progress from undergraduate to postgraduate and then finally onto a doctorate. There was a very homely and caring connection to place. A real sense that people wanted to see you succeed; reaching your full potential - being your personal best.
Can you recall your feeling when finding out you were offered a place in WIT
It was certainly satisfying, perhaps even a sense of relief. I recognised this from the open evening, events and other engagements with the institute in advance of coming here. Maybe it is the small classrooms, the open door policy, being from Waterford, knowing people in the college whilst also maintaining some sense of stability with my other commitments.
What advice would you give to students considering your course?
Go with your gut, you should gain a sense of community once you walk in the door of a college. And so, it is important; maybe even the leading reason to select a course - base it on your interest and passion. I would advise against course selection and college choice because of friends. If you are happy in your course most things will organically fall into place. A job is for the next 40 years (give or take), so going with your heart rather than your head is a nice approach.
When and where was your first job after graduating?
I set up my own business just under two years ago; and within the last 12 months I have also been fortunate to have lectured within the Institute.
How has your studies at WIT helped you to get where you are today?
Nearly 9 years of study within the college has been the central reason for my current position. I will be forever indebted to the Institute for allowing me to reach my full potential; it has offered me skills and knowledge which has seen me work with some of the largest sporting bodies within Ireland. Travel to some of the world’s leading cities; but also become a part of the academy. Presenting my research at the most recognisable conferences nationally and internationally - something that I am looking forward to continuing.
How did your experience at WIT help get you to where you are now?
Similar to the above, my journey and place would certainly be much different without the guide and support from all at WIT. The people - from the academic staff, admin staff, the porters, the IT department and everyone in between have made this a memorable experience. It is hard to believe the sense of togetherness and community demonstrated daily by all, there are people within such that I have become great friends with. There have been too many people along the way to pin point and suggest that person was the reason for my current place; it was my engagement with all that made it such an incredible time.
What is Waterford like as a city for college social life?
Unfortunately my social life was limited, my first year within the college saw me being called up to the Waterford senior team; which meant there was little time to experience the late nights like most. However, I would not change it for the world, this is a strong part of my identity and I have enjoyed the last 10 years within the Waterford set up.