More than 500 guidance counsellors from all over Ireland are expected to attend the Institute of Guidance Counsellors National Conference which will be held in NUI Galway tomorrow (Friday ) and Saturday. This 2020 conference is being hosted by the Galway/Mayo branch of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors. As well as facilitating the two day conference, NUI Galway has been unveiled as the main sponsor for this year’s event, with supporting sponsorship from GMIT.
“NUI Galway is looking forward to hosting the IGC National Conference 2020," said NUI Galway president Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh. "Compassion, respect, and providing a caring and inclusive student experience is central to the mission of NUI Galway so we are particularly proud to support the conference theme, ‘Cultivating a Culture of Compassion’.
“Fully understanding and appreciating the critical role guidance counsellors play in helping our young people prepare for life after secondary school, we look forward to welcoming guidance colleagues from all over the country to our beautiful campus and to providing opportunities to share, learn and recharge over the two day conference.”
Chairperson Barry McDermott, guidance counsellor in St Joseph's (The Bish ), believes that "a lack of compassion towards individuals, groups, and our environment, is creating many of the divisions and problems evident in today’s society.” He added: “It is our wish for the conference that through our wide variety of workshops, guidance counsellors working across all sectors get an opportunity to improve their professional knowledge and skills, and hopefully experience some of the wonderful attractions that make Galway such a special place.”
IGC president Beatrice Dooley said: “The IGC are exceptionally proud to support the conference theme, ‘Cultivating a Culture of Compassion’. The IGC annual conference is an opportunity for guidance counsellors working with learners across the lifespan to reconnect with each other, with educational partners and labour market stakeholders. At conference 2020 we can upskill, reflect on our professional practice, and experiment with other ways of delivering on the personal, educational, and vocational guidance counselling needs of those in our care. This year’s conference theme resonates with the very essence of our work."
The two day conference, taking place on March 6 and 7, will include a series of 19 workshops focusing on the concept and delivery of compassion, guidance topics for second and third level, and professional development tools. On day one of the conference, delegates can expect a range of talks dedicated to the conference theme, including a SMART consent workshop by Dr Pádraig MacNeela and Dr Siobhán O’Higgins, School of Psychology, and Dr Charlotte McIvor, drama and theatre studies at NUI Galway. Highlights on day two of the conference include a panel discussion on ‘Careers in the Creative Industries’ which will see contributions from Sarah Lynch, technical recruiter with Renttherunway, Ian Brathwaite, manager of Romero Games, and award winning screen writer Will Collins who was nominated for an Oscar for Song of the Sea.
Finally Dr Harry Barry, renowned author and doctor, will deliver workshop on ‘How to manage panic attacks and social anxiety’, and he will also deliver the keynote address at Saturday’s conference.
Attendance at the Institute of Guidance Counsellor Conference is open to members and non-members. For registration visit www.igc.ie