PFA Ireland Career Preparation Webinar Series

#BeReady #athletecareertransition #athleticretirement #pfaireland

Every week in the month of October PFA Ireland will be hosting a career preparation webinar for players from the SSE Airtricity League and Women’s National League. Each webinar will address a different aspect of career preparation including the transition to retirement, CV preparation, time management in a dual-career and transferable skills from a football career to new industries.
There will be a unique link for each webinar, so ensure you are registered for each one you want to attend.


Guest speakers include:

October 7th Shane Supple – Second Career & CV Preparation
Shane is a former professional footballer who played with Ipswich Town for 7 years in the UK and spent 3 years in the League of Ireland playing for Bohemian FC before being forced to retire through injury in 2018. An All-Ireland winner with the Dublin Senior Footballers (2013), he has played with high performing teams across two different sports during his career. He is currently working in the Recruitment industry where he works with a number of Blue-Chip multinational organisations and professionals across industry at mid to C-suite level. Shane has transitioned from a career on the field where he gained some valuable insights into what it takes to become a successful team and has transferred these learnings across to his work in business where he is an advocate for his clients, delivering results through understanding, integrity and passion.

October 14th Aaron Buggle – Retirement and Life After Sport
Aaron is a former professional cyclist, two-time national champion, sports scientist and coach. Aaron left school for France at 17 years old with reluctant parental consent to compete with a top amateur club. He suffered a devastating loss of a close friend and mentor in 2009 and the subsequent trauma spurred on exponential development and progression in a short space of time. However, bad crashes, injury, and disillusionment, saw Aaron face the biggest transition he’d ever faced - to retire from elite sport at the tender age of 23.

October 19th - Keara Cormican & Catherine Cronin – Managing Multiple Commitments in a Dual-Career
Keara and Catherine will join us for a conversation about how they balance busy schedules of training, games and their full-time jobs. Keara balances her football commitment as Captain of Galway Women’s Football Club with her career as a Secondary School Science teacher. She studied for her degree in the University of Limerick where she competed in the World University Games for Ireland. Catherine is a radiology nurse at St Vincent’s Hospital in Dublin and also captains her side, the DLR Waves. From Limerick, Catherine moved to Dublin in 2014 and was part of the Raheny United side that was the first Irish team to win a Champions League qualifying group and has represented Ireland at underage level and at the World University Games.

October 28th Collie O’Neill & Colin Hawkins – Transferable skills from a sport career to Tech and Sales
Collie and Colin will discuss the skills they believe a career in football develops which make a footballer an attractive hire in their current industries. Collie currently works as a Senior Service Reliability Engineer Manager in Microsoft. Previously he was a football coach with Dublin City, Dundalk and Shelbourne, and took over as the UCD manager ahead of the 2015 campaign. He led the team to a league title win in 2018, following a move to a scholarship-based model. Before Colin’s life was busy with his wife, 3 kids and his role as the Director of Football at St Mochtas FC, he was a professional footballer. Following his Leaving Cert in Galway, he moved to England to play with Coventry City. During his 20 years as a professional player between Ireland and the UK he completed his UEFA A licence and started to work as a Christmas merchandiser with CPM. Soon after, he took on a full-time role and progressed to his current role as Regional Sales Manager of Diageo Take Home trade team.

Past Players Program
The purpose of these webinars is to encourage players to Be Ready for their next career. The need to offer career preparation services to our members became apparent in 2018, when 31% of surveyed professional football players reported the highest level of formal education, they had completed was the Junior Certificate. In 2019, 44% of those surveyed said they weren’t prepared for life after football. PFA Ireland are committed to ensuring that its members are afforded the opportunity to develop to their full potential in a professional and supportive environment.

With the support of the FIFPRO Mind the Gap initiative, the PFA Ireland Player Development Service aims to support professional football players in their career, education and personal development. The aim of the Mind The Gap project is to ‘close the gap’ between the end of the professional sporting career and entering the labour market by enabling a transition into a second career which is as relevant and satisfying for the professional player as possible. Dr. Emma Burrows was appointed as the Player Development Manager in 2019 as part of the Mind the Gap initiative and will host the Webinar Series.

PFA Ireland will also be launching a new initiative called the Past Players Program. In 2019, 72% of surveyed professional players in Ireland said they would like to meet a retired player to discuss the transition to retirement and life after football. As the world of work is becoming more demanding and requires constant change, we want to afford our members the opportunity to discuss and network with those who have journeyed the path before them. The aim of this program is to create a database of past League of Ireland players who have successfully transitioned into new career paths to act as mentors to the current generation.
If you are a retired professional player and would have the time and interest to meet and potentially mentor current League of Ireland professional players on their personal development in preparation for their next career please fill in your details on our website

If you are a player who wants to access the mentor network, please contact