Elizabeth Byrne is currently competing her MA in Development Studies on a part-time basis. A retired secondary school teacher, Elizabeth has been interested in development issues for many years and continues her involvement in various areas in Turkana, Kenya. Here, she shares her experience of studying at Kimmage.
“Kimmage Development Studies Centre offers a unique opportunity to place the experience of working in development within an academic framework. Since 1994 using career breaks from secondary teaching in Ireland I have worked both on a full- time and part-time basis principally in Turkana, Kenya. My work was primarily in education, at the ‘chalk-face’ and in administration, though it also involved assisting with a women’s craft project as well.
“The participatory nature of the course has allowed me to critically reflect on all those experiences and to further my understanding of development and to do so in the company of others. One of the great advantages of Kimmage is the international nature of the student body all of whom bring something special to the course. Retirement from full –time employment seems to me to present an ideal time for reflection on both the past and on the future and to do so in the encouraging and convivial atmosphere that is the Kimmage Development Studies Centre.”