Graduate Opportunities in a Post-Pandemic World

For many recent graduates set to enter the workforce, to say that their third-level education experience has been “unusual” is an understatement. Their college career, which began in the typical on-campus fashion, was turned upside-down in March of 2020 as the entire world ground to a halt to combat the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. The variety and immersion of campus-based lectures and workshops was replaced overnight with the new reality of videoconferencing, often in makeshift offices, on kitchen tables, or in bedrooms.

As the months rolled inexorably onward, hope re-emerged and things slowly drifted back to a semblance of normality. Campuses re-opened and students once again flocked to lecture halls. Despite these promising signs of improvement, for that generation of students who had their college education bifurcated by the pandemic there remains a stain on the experience which can be difficult to recovery from.

The fact remains that a third-level education is so much more than just a series of notes, slideshows, and assignments. College presents students with challenges and growth opportunities, forcing them to strive to achieve more than they ever thought they were capable of on the road to success. It also provides a support structure of mentors: lecturers, librarians and peers, to help guide them down this path. While communications tools such as Microsoft Teams are a tremendous avenue to facilitate remote learning, there is no replacing the mentorship that a simple in-person conversation between lecturer and student provides.

Outside of their education, students had to contend with the uncertainty of the whole situation. With the rapid oscillation between easing and tightening of pandemic restrictions, many graduates simply could not predict the reliability of their employment status as their places of work re-opened only to close weeks later.

In taking strides out of the shadow of the pandemic, employers need to recognise the unique position that today’s graduates find themselves in. Graduate programmes have always been a mutually beneficial endeavour, both to the graduate and to the employer. It is important that employers now take efforts go beyond what was traditionally expected of them in the graduate-employer relationship. Great graduate programmes, while still acting as a means for graduates to learn and build upon their academic knowledge in a real-world setting, need to foster a strong culture of collaboration and teamwork, underpinned by a robust mentorship structure. Stability, which was absent in the lives of today’s graduates for so long, needs to be reinforced, with career paths and progressions available within the organisation once the graduate programme has run its course.

With a tenure in the Irish market spanning over forty years, Datapac is uniquely positioned to provide the guidance and mentorship needed to help transition promising graduates into skilful professionals. Since its inception almost two decades ago, our Graduate Programme has resulted in over 200 early career programme placements successfully completed, representing an investment of more than €2 million. We take raw talent and deliver the skills, experience and mentorship needed to actualise individuals into well-rounded, market ready IT professionals. Continued career progression within Datapac is always a possible outcome of our Graduate Programme. Indeed, many of our most skilled and experienced team members can trace their roots directly to their participation in the Programme.

“As both a graduate and work placement student, Datapac gave me the exposure and the responsibility that I needed to grow my knowledge and expertise. The programme allowed me to build my skills through doing hands on work for customers while having the support of experienced IT professionals for guidance when needed. The programme was varied, and I got to shadow larger infrastructure projects, which I now complete.  Throughout the programme I was encouraged to undertake industry certifications which enhanced my learning when mixed with real work deployments. Over 10 years later and I am still working with Datapac and have progressed through several roles to become a Senior Systems Engineer where I continue to learn and be challenged every day.”

Gavin Downey, Senior Systems Engineer, Datapac

“It’s an excellent way to grow and develop your career. I’ve found that it’s been a great way to enhance the knowledge and skills obtained through my college education and has helped me understand how to apply this knowledge in real-world scenarios. On a regular basis I’ll find myself working on multiple projects with a range of different technologies, which has really helped broaden my understanding of the field. The team environment is a huge component of the programme; it’s great to work as part of a team where everyone’s input is listened to and considered.”

Luciana Fragoso, Software Developer, Datapac


We are currently taking applications for our 2022/23 Graduate Programme. Click here to learn more about the various career tracks we have to offer. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch to learn more by contacting us at

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