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Limited places still available

Limited places still available

There are limited places available on some PLC courses. We will be registering students up until October 6th. Its not too late to find the perfect course for you.

Places are available on various courses in the following departments: Art & Design, Media, Outdoor Education, Health Sciences, Performing Arts.

Apply online by clicking the “Apply Now” button on our homepage and we’ll do the rest!

Industry experience for Fashion Design & Styling course

The Fashion Design & Styling course at CDCFE has an exciting schedule of events lined up this term. Students will help assist backstage at Louise Kennedy’s 40th Anniversary show in Dublin, a milestone event for the fashion designer.

Students on the QQI level 5 & 6 course will also take part in The Gloss fashion show in the RDS in November. This gives students a first-hand glimpse at the skills required to work in the fashion industry. Participants on the course, which is part of the art and design department at CDCFE, learn skills needed to make garments and will also gain work experience in many more fashion events throughout the year, including running their own fashion show at year end.

Course coordinator Sarjit Verik says “it’s great for our students to attend these events as they provide valuable learning experiences for our students. Coordinating shows and working with various designers can provide students with hands-on experience and insight into the world of fashion production”.

Earlier in the year CDCFE Fashion course graduate Nicole Mbenza’s garment was featured in Peter Mark’s summer campaign. Peter Mark required a unique vibrant garment to showcase new hairstyles for Summer 2023 advertising campaign for Ireland.

We are still enrolling for fashion design & styling and many other PLC courses as well as traineeships and BA degrees. Follow our social media or see cdcfe.ie for more information.

Peter Mark summer '23 poster campaign
Peter Mark summer ’23 poster campaign featuring garment by fashion design course graduate Nicole Mbenza

Check out the fashion Instagram page here

See more about the fashion course here

8-Week Evening Courses – Starting 3rd October

Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education are offering 8-week evening courses, starting on 3rd October.  Courses take place in our Coolock campus from 7-9pm.

Choose from Interior Design, Drawing, Makeup & Beauty or Special Needs Assistant (SNA). The SNA course cost €199 for one QQI Level 5 module. CDCFE will also have a Pilates class from 6-7pm for just €70.

*Please note that the SNA course commences on 26th September

See more information and apply online Here

Contact corina.lynch@cdcfe.cdetb.ie for more information

Night courses at CDCFE

Career Guidance Drop-In Service

Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education will be running a career guidance drop-in service for the first week of September. There is no need to make an appointment, simply call in to our Coolock campus between 10am-2pm daily.

This service is designed for Post Leaving Cert students who are in need of advice around their next steps, or anyone else considering taking a course at CDCFE this year. Appointments with our guidance counsellors are strictly confidential and are centered around helping prospective students with their decision-making process.

For more information about location and the courses on offer at Coláiste Dhúlaigh, follow our social media and visit www.cdcfe.ie. Create Your Future at CDCFE.

Course Registration Dates

Please see details below on course dates and what to bring to your registration.

All courses will register in the Coolock campus.

Coolock Campus
MONDAY 11th Sept Location
10.00am Performing Arts Year 2
Traineeship in Outdoor Education
Film Production Year 2
Coolock Campus
11.00am Social Care Year 2
Computer Science Year 2
Coolock Campus
12.30pm Media Production TV and Sound Year 2
Animation Year 2 & 3
Pre-University Business Studies Year 2
Coolock Campus
TUESDAY 12th September Location
9.30am Computer Networking Technologies 1
Computer Science 1
Coolock Campus


Pre-University Science (DCU Access)
Pre-University Science – Lab Techniques
Coolock Campus
1.30pm Preliminary Engineering
Engineering Technology
Coolock Campus


WEDNESDAY 13th September  Location


Performing Arts Year 1
Pre-University Business Studies Year 1
Coolock Campus


Tour Guiding Level 6
Hairdressing Pre-Apprenticeship
Occupational Therapy Assistant
Speech & Language Therapy Assistant
Coolock Campus


Pre-University Nursing Coolock Campus


Pre-University Sports Science
Sport Rehabilitation & Exercise Therapy
Healthcare & Physiotherapy Assistant
Coolock Campus


THURSDAY 14th September  Location


Media Production TV & Sound Year 1
Film Production Year 1
Coolock Campus


Early Learning & Care Year 1
Pre-University Psychology
Journalism & Podcasting
Coolock Campus


Pre-Primary and Post Primary School Teaching
Social Media Content Creation
Early Learning Care Level 6
Coolock Campus


Social Care L5 Year 1
Creative Writing for Digital Media
Coolock Campus


FRIDAY 15th September  Location
10am Graphic Design Foundation (1st yrs)
Architectural Design and Technology Foundation (1st yrs)
Advanced Certificate in Art & Design
Interior Design
Graphic Design Level 6 (2nd Years)
Photography Level 6
Coolock Campus


Animation Year 1
Fashion Design & Styling
Craft Level 5
Outdoor Adventure Management Year 1
Coolock Campus
2pm Art & Design Portfolio Preparation Coolock Campus


Please have the following with you for registration:
1 – Valid ID
Passport OR
National ID Card OR
Driver’s License

2 – If you are a holder of the following, please bring them to the registration
-current medical card
-GNIB / IRP card

3 – New students with a health issue, learning support need or a disability are asked to register with the Disability and Learning Support service in the college at Student Support Registration Form. If you have already registered there is no need to complete this form again.

To speed up your registration process you can Login to your enrol college account and complete the Learner Detail Form before registration.

Start of Classes

All classes will start from September 25th.

*Please note that course offers are conditional on students meeting the minimum course entry requirements. Please ensure you check the course website page for details of the specific requirements for your course. If English is not your first language, an English Language Test may be required. If you are a mature student i.e over 21 and in receipt of social welfare for over 6 months, you may be eligible for VTOS. This means that you can keep your Social Welfare payments and course charges are waived. For further information please contact michelle.culligan@cdcfe.cdetb.ie as soon as possible. Non-EU students must comply with Irish Immigration requirements. A visa from the Immigration Section of the Department of Justice & Equality must be secured prior to commencing course. Non-EU students will be required to pay a tuition fee.

New Traineeship in TV & Film Production at Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education

Traineeship.ie logo

Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education are delighted to announce that applications are now open for an exciting new Traineeship in TV & Film Production. This course is designed for anyone who dreams of a career in the media.

The Traineeship is a QQI Level 6 course and participants will learn the skills required to work on live tv & film productions in a realistic setting.  Practical classes take place in CDCFE’s Coolock campus and students will also do a work placement with a media partner. Trainees on this course will have the opportunity to learn skills such as editing, radio production, camera & lighting and much more.

Applicants for this fast-paced course should ideally have a QQI level 5 qualification in a media related field, or relevant experience. The course is fully funded and will provide the skills required to gain employment in an expanding media sector.

Dillon Adams is a graduate of CDCFE who now wants to pursue a career in media. “I tend to remember things better through hands-on learning. I also want to build my connections in the film and media industry to potentially secure a full-time job. For these reasons I have chosen to apply to the media traineeship.”

Applications are now open online at www.cdcfe.ie. For more information about the Traineeship in TV & Film Production at CDCFE visit their website or follow their social media.

Social Media Icons for CDCFE


Trainee Dillon Adams working on the set of the Toy Show

TV & Film Production Trainee Dillon Adams working on the set of the Toy Show

CDCFE Hairdressers celebrate Apprentice of the Year 2023 Nominations

Apprentice of the Year logo


Bernie Brazel, nominated for Apprentice of the Year 2023

Bernie Brazel, nominated for Apprentice of the Year 2023


Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education (CDCFE) are delighted to congratulate their Hairdressing students who have been nominated for Apprentice of the Year 2023. Eleven apprentices have been invited to attend a ceremony in The Mansion House in October, which takes place with the support of Minister Simon Harris and the National Apprenticeship Office.

The Hairdressing Apprenticeship at CDCFE is based in “Cabello”, a state-of-the-art hairdressing salon in the college’s Kilbarrack campus. Participants on the course do their practical work whilst working in a professional salon, and then study one day a week on campus, allowing them to “earn while they learn”. The course provides an Advanced Certificate in Hairdressing, which is currently the only national qualification for fully qualified hairdressers in Ireland.

Philip McDonagh, nominated for Apprentice of the Year 2023

Philip McDonagh, nominee for Apprentice of the Year

Course coordinator Kevin Cahill commented “we are delighted to have 11 nominations across our four hairdressing cohorts, particularly as this number is up from one last year – it is great to see CDCFE’s apprentices getting the recognition they deserve for their hard work”

If you would like to know more about the hairdressing apprenticeship at Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE and how to apply, check out their website www.cdcfe.ie and follow their social media.

Social Media Icons for CDCFE


Rebecca Lynch, nominated for Apprentice of the Year 2023

Rebecca Lynch, Stage 2 Hairdresser nominated for Apprentice of the Year


The Full List of Nominees are:

Stage 1:

Ceiligh Mc Donald
Chloe Murray

Stage 2: 

Rhiannon Black
Janet Talon
Siobhan Coates
Philip MC Donagh
Sarah Meleady

Stage 3:

Bernie Brazel
Alex Dromgoole
Nicole Quinlan
Rebecca Lynch

Generation Apprenticeship Logo

Applications Open for Courses Starting in September ’23

Applications now Open at CDCFE

Applications are open online now for over 70 courses that are offered at Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education (CDCFE).

CDCFE has over 12 departments, ranging from Animation, to Hairdressing to Science & Engineering and a many more disciplines.

Courses are offered at a range of levels, from full time QQI Levels 4, 5 & 6, Higher National Diplomas (HND), Apprenticeships, Traineeships, Entrepreneurship and BA Top-up Degrees as well as part-time courses.

Our PLC courses are designed for students who didn’t meet the CAO requirements for a university place and want to progress through an alternative route.

We also welcome mature students who want to return to education.

We provide work based learning and part-time courses for people who want to learn new skills or improve existing ones, and also need to work at the same time.

The Back to Education Initiative (BTEI) and Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme (VTOS) offer the chance for people to study while retaining their social welfare payments.

With the City of Dublin ETB providing courses for only €50 this year, there has never been a better time to access education.

Whatever your needs, Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE has a course for you. Follow us on social media for updates and check out www.cdcfe.ie for more information and to apply for a course. Your Future Starts Here.

Registration Dates

Second and Third year classes will register on Monday 11th September.

First Year classes will register from September 12th – September 15th.

Registration for all campuses will take place in the Coolock campus and must be attended in person.

A detailed list of course registration will be published later this week.


All course registration fees reduced to €50 at CDCFE

The City of Dublin ETB has announced that all of its PLC courses will now cost a flat registration fee of €50 in the 2023-24 Academic Year. This fee is to be paid by applicants on acceptance of a course, therefore Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE will no longer request a €50 deposit for course applications. If you have already paid more than €50 for a course starting in September 2023, this will be refunded to you.

The decision was made by the City of Dublin ETB, of which CDCFE is a constituent, in an effort to drive down the cost of living and enable inclusive and accessible education for all, a key function of further education and training.

Our courses offer excellent progression routes into universities or employment. We offer Post Leaving Certificate courses at QQI levels 4,5, & 6, as well as Apprenticeships, Traineeships and BA Degrees. Check out list of over 70 courses on offer at Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE and apply now at www.cdcfe.ie.

CDCFE Fashion Design Student featured in Peter Mark Campaign

Congratulations to Fashion Design course graduate Nicole Mbenza whose garment is currently being featured in national campaign by renowned hairdressers Peter Mark.

Peter Mark required a unique vibrant garment to showcase new hairstyles for their Summer 2023 advertising campaign for Ireland. 

Fashion and hair are often intertwined, and when they harmonize, they can create a visually stunning overall look, as they did in this campaign. 

Fashion student Nicole Mbenza’s creation not only showcases her design skills but also highlights the importance of sustainable fashion and the potential for incorporating unconventional materials into the world of style. It’s inspiring to see young talents pushing the boundaries of fashion and creating visually striking pieces that promote eco-consciousness.

Applications for the fashion design and styling course are now open for September 2023.

Peter Mark summer '23 poster campaign
Peter Mark summer ’23 poster campaign featuring garment by fashion design course graduate Nicole Mbenza

Fashion Design graduate Nicole MbenzaN

Nicole Mbenza works on a garment

Graduation Ceremony Pictures

Graduation took place in the Hogan Suite, Croke Park, on Monday, May 29th. We were delighted to welcome our graduates to this ceremony, a celebration of their achievements throughout the year.

Graduates toss their caps at CDCFE ceremony


BA Film Production & BA Animation Graduate Film Screening, Lighthouse Cinema, 26th May

Wolverhampton logo

The Film Production BA and Animation BA courses at Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education would like to invite you to a screening of their graduate films in the Lighthouse Cinema, Smithfield, on 26th May.

The screening will begin at 3pm, followed by a reception afterwards from 5.30pm. If you would like to attend this event, please contact coolock@cdcfe.cdetb.ie. Book early to avoid disappointment.

Film Degree graduate screening Lighthouse cinema 26th May


The Film Production and Animation BA Hons programmes at CDCFE are accredited by University of Wolverhampton, and delivered on an in-person, part-time basis at Coláiste Dhúlaigh’s Coolock campus. Our tutors are award winning industry professionals who are dedicated to the highest standards of film making. Many of our graduates have continued into successful careers in the industry.

Applications are now open for the 2023/24 academic year. To learn more about our degree courses and to see samples of student work, visit the course pages below and follow our social media for more news & updates.

B.A. (Hons) Top Up Degree In Animation at Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE (cdcfe.ie)

B.A. Top Up Degree in Video & Film Production at Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE (cdcfe.ie)

Animation graduate degree screening Lighthouse Cinema 26th May


CDCFE’s Frank Berry wins Best Director at IFTAs 2023

Huge congratulations to Frank Berry who has won the best Director Award at the Irish Film & Television Awards (IFTAs). A former student and tutor of Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education, Berry beat Banshees of Inisheerin Director Martin McDonagh in the category for his film Aisha, which also won Best Script at an awards ceremony held in Dublin on Sunday.

Berry’s work focusses on hard hitting documentaries in his trademark social reality style. He aims to spotlight difficult social issues such as addiction, poverty, suicide and wealth inequality. Aisha tackles racism and looks at Ireland’s immigration system through the eyes of his protagonist, Nigerian woman Aisha Osagie, played by Leticia Wright.

The award-winning director has previously spoken out on the issue of direct provision and worked closely with groups such as Asylum Seekers Ireland to highlight what he describes as an “inhumane system” while making Aisha.

IFTA winner Frank Berry at a recent talk with CDCFE students

Berry previously directed the IFTA nominated “I Used to Live Here” as well as the critically acclaimed “Michael Inside”. Frank’s earlier work “Ballymun Lullaby”, is an uplifting look at the impact one person can have in a community.

In a guest lecture recently with Film Production students at Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education Frank advised students who want to get into the media industry to “practice a lot, make lots of films and then you will see your voice coming through. Hard work pays off no matter where you are”. Applications are now open online at www.cdcfe.ie for courses starting this September.

Solar Share – Solar PV System Installer

Are you interested in developing your career in the solar sector?

SolarShare has vacancies in our Solar PV system installation teams, and we welcome applications from ambitious and talented individuals dedicated to high- quality work required to build out the low-carbon economy.

SolarShare enables homeowners to generate and harness their own electricity from sunlight using solar PV panels and energy storage batteries. Over the next two decades, we want to help our communities make the transition to zero- carbon living as simply and cost-effectively as possible.

If the role below is of interest please apply, sharing your CV via the SolarShare website Join Our Team – SolarShare or contact careers@solarshare.ie with any queries you may have about the role.

Graduate Solar PV System Installer

As a bright and hard-working team player, you will be required to excel at solar PV systems installation and set high standards of workmanship and safety for your colleagues.

All necessary training will be provided by some of the most experienced people in the industry.


  • Work as part of a team installing domestic and commercial solar PV systems;
  • Work to the highest standards ensuring all Health and Safety procedures are adhered to at all times;


  • Show up every time and on time;
  • Work safely;
  • Be polite and courteous to colleagues and customers;

Essential Skills and Attributes

  •  Ability and ambition to learn;
  • Safety conscious;
  • Team player;
  • Positive attitude;
  • Enjoy the satisfaction that comes from doing good work well;


Working pattern and Location

Your team is required to work Monday to Friday. Louth, Meath, Dublin areas.


Competitive package provided for the right candidate.

Visit our website: www.solarshare.ie
Carlisle Building 51 Bracken Road, Sandyford, Dublin 18, | D18 CV48

Farewell Festival, 11th May – You’re Invited!

You’re invited to our Farewell Festival event in the grounds of our Raheny campus, Springdale Road, on 11th May, 1-4pm.

We hope you will join us for free food, fun & refreshments!

The event will showcase student work from college departments including Art & Design, Floristry, Pottery, and Entrepreneurship, with live music from the Media students.

We will also have a spectacular catwalk show with designs by the fashion course.

Our Cafe & Deli skills course master chef, Billy, will prepare a mouthwatering BBQ & treats.

All proceeds from products sold at the event will go to NCBI (National Council for the Blind) who will also have a stall on the day selling preloved clothes.

We look forward to welcoming prospective and current students from all our campuses to this celebration.

Farewell Festival, Raheny campus, 11th May, 1-4pm
Farewell Festival, Raheny campus, 11th May, 1-4pm

CDCFE Announces new Computer Science progression route to TCD

New Progression route from CDCFE to Computer Science at TCD

Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education is delighted to announce that they are the first PLC college in Ireland to offer students the opportunity to progress to TR033, Trinity College’s Level 8 Computer Science BA Degree. TR033 is a hugely sought-after course which required 555 CAO points in 2022.

As the only Computer Science PLC course nationwide offering the ‘Maths for STEM 5N0556’ module, CDCFE students are uniquely placed to satisfy TCD’s QQI/FET access requirements for TR033.

CDCFE are now accepting applications for Computer Science QQI Levels 5 & 6, starting in September.

Apply now here to secure your place.


Progression route from CDCFE to Computer Science at TCD

CDCFE Student wins Short Story of the Year in Smedia 2023 Awards

We are proud to announce that media department student, Stephen White, has won first place in the Short Story of the Year category in the 2023 Smedia awards.

Stephen, who is a mature student that joined CDCFE during the pandemic, saw off competition from other nominees in the category from UCD, UCC, TCD & Maynooth University.

Stephen’s story “Looking Back” was written in 2022 while he was a student in CDCFE’s Creative Writing course. He is now studying Social Media Content Creator and is producing Radio show “Hear Here” on Near FM which frequently features Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE student work.

Earlier this year he was short listed for an ETB Excellence award in the Learner Creative category for his video “Tell ’em who sent you”. (see link below) He was also a winner in the 2022 SCC Creative writing competition.

Congratulations to all our students who were nominated and represented CDCFE so well.

Read winning short story “Looking Back” Here:

Looking Back (1)


Creative Writing Course Publication “The Quill” Official Launch

The Quill front cover


“The Quill”, a collection of poetry and short stories by the creative writing course students will be officially launched on Thursday in the Coolock canteen.

Copies of the publication will be distributed throughout the three campuses or you can read a digital copy of the publication here:

The Quill

For more information about the creative writing QQI Level 5 course at CDCFE click here:

Creative Writing for Digital Media Course at Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE (cdcfe.ie)

“Photographics” – Photography & Graphic Design Exhibition Launch, Tuesday April 25th, 4-7pm

The Photography and Graphic Design students collectively known as “Photographics”, are delighted to announce the launch of their Photography Exhibition.  The opening of the exhibition will take place at Cólaiste Dhúlaigh CFE Coolock Campus on Tuesday 25th of April between 4pm – 7pm and will be on display there throughout the year.  All are very welcome to attend.

The Virtual Exhibition will also go live at the same time, click the link to view it:


This collaboration between the photography and graphic design students is a significant piece of the QQI Level 6 Arts Events Management module.  This in turn is a part of the Photography L6 and Graphic Design L6 courses.

Participants in this year’s exhibition are as follows:

Przemyslaw Zimowski, Ken Beirne, Adrian Oakes, Charlie Murphy, Sandris Beckovs, AidenLea Blackman, Cassidy Kearney, Ki Cumiskey, Aoife Fitzpatrick, Corrine Richards Scully, Maria Mitrovic, John Flanagan, Marsha Koshyrenkova.

Photographics exhibition


Employer Engagement Breakfast Briefing – Kilbarrack Campus, Wednesday 26th April, 8am

Breakfast Briefing at CDCFE KIlbarrack campus Wednesday 26th April


Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education (CDCFE) will host a Breakfast Briefing in its Kilbarrack Campus, Briarfield Villas, on Wednesday 26th April 2023, from 8am to 9am. This briefing aims to reconnect with local employers by showcasing opportunities in continued professional development for businesses and their employees.

As a constituent of the City of Dublin Education & Training Board, CDCFE wants to engage with employers to identify their workforce training needs. The briefing offers employers the chance to hear about the upskilling and reskilling opportunities that CDCFE currently offers through the Skills to Advance initiative.

Skills to Advance is a subsidised scheme that provides training relevant to business needs. CDCFE aims to provide courses that respond to the changing nature of jobs and skills. Currently we can offer training in areas of healthcare, tourism/hospitality, digital marketing, construction/engineering, etc. All bespoke courses are tailored to the SMEs needs.

CDCFE are keen to engage with employers about the development of suitable industry- based programmes for the workforce of the future.

Please register for the event using the link below:


SUSI Information Event – Sat 6th May

Susi logo

  • Are you starting or attending further or higher education in academic year 2023/24?
  • Want to know more about student funding?
  • Planning to apply for funding when SUSI opens on 13 April 2023?

Then our virtual SUSI Information Event is for you.

We’ll explore the types of funding available, look at the eligibility criteria, take you through the application process and our expert team will be on hand to answer your questions.

Date: Saturday 6 May 2023

Time: 11am

Location: Microsoft Teams Virtual Event

Places are limited so be sure to secure yours now by registering at events@susi.ie by 10am on Friday 5 May 2023.

Congratulations to our Smedia Nominees

Smedia award details

Huge congratulations to our students who are nominated in the 2023 National Student Media Awards (Smedias). The awards ceremony will take place this Thursday 20th April in the Aviva Stadium and we will be rooting for the nominees. Best of luck!


Radio DJ of the year – Dillon Adams


Short Film of the Year – The Winner – Anna Moloney & David Shoyinka



Film Documentary of the Year – Have you Heard From Declan – Sadhbh Hughes & George Sharpson



Short Story of the Year – Looking Back –  Stephen White (Read story below)


Film Script of the year – Blurred Vision – Joseph Reilly

Watch the trailer for Blurred Vision Here:


“Looking Back” by Stephen White

The morning silence was broken by the usual dulcet tones of the newsreader on the ‘wireless’. The sombre words along with the sound of the whistling kettle and the smell of burning toast wafted upstairs from the warmest room in the house. The dial on the radio was fixed by my father at RTE One and as was the norm now the headlines was the violence erupting in Northern Ireland and Maggie Thatcher going head-to-head with the IRA and the Hunger strikers.

As I held my customary morning conference with my reflection in the stained bathroom mirror, it was agreed that the reason we had been dreaming about Maggie Thatcher last night was because she was constantly on the news and that the dream had nothing, absolutely nothing to do with the conversation me and the lads were having the other day about older women. The who you might fancy chat, only as a joke by the way and listen we were talking about Raquel Welch, Liz Taylor and Bridgette Bardot and the like. It was ‘Pee Pee’ Murray who suggested Maggie Thatcher and he would have been snared rapid if it wasn’t for ‘Snitchy’ Mc Gee coming around the corner with that can of beer.

Pee Pee got away with it but it’s been on my mind ever since. Any way to move on to item two on the agenda. The very noticeable monstrosity on my face that resembled mount Vesuvius. It seemed no matter how much of my sisters make up I used it wouldn’t stay hidden. My acne was so bad now that my spots were getting spots. The loud banging and shouting on the bathroom door from my adoring siblings signaled the conclusion of this morning’s conference.

As I two stepped down the stairs and was just about to make a break for the front door my mother stopped me in my tracks. “Alex please be sure to come straight home from school today, we need to have a talk.” “Sure,” I muttered keeping my head down so she wouldn’t notice the makeup. It took some time to dry and crust over before it didn’t look like girls make up, but bumpy orangey skin. Anyway I eventually broke free and set off for the ‘early bus’. This was the one Tina (and most likely that creep Kavanagh) would be on. The alternative to the ‘early’ was the ‘quarter past’ and that was slow, packed, and more than likely ‘Tina-less’. Also the ‘quarter past’ as it slowly rattled its way through the traffic laden roads of Dublin would produce a potent sleep inducing mixture of diesel and tobacco vapor (smoking on the ‘upstairs’ of buses was almost compulsory in the early 1980’s). I didn’t mind sleeping it was the invasion of a certain prime minister into my dreams that was worrying me.

The quarter past also meant dealing with Percy, the potbellied, face gurning, know-all bus conductor, who always seemed to be on whatever bus I was taking. That intervention by my mother meant I had now to run if I was to have any chance of catching Tina.

As I pounded the pavement I recalled yesterday’s conversation and her suggestion about my hair, as in ‘do something with it, anything, but lose the mop.’ Red hair seems to attract unsolicited comments from all comers including Percy who would entertain the passengers on the 16C with, “How ye Ginger, Fred not with you today?” Oh how he laughed at that one every day (sometimes twice on the same day).

According to Jack Mac (my best buddy in school), the fact that Tina commented on my hair, was a sure sign that she was interested in me. What did that say about Percy? “Girls always want to change you” the worldly wise playboy Jack informed me. Jack having ‘wared a mot’ was way ahead of me when it came to the opposite sex. That and his Northside upbringing. North-siders have the edge over Southsiders when it comes to sex. The girls really enjoy it. Fake jewelry but real orgasms is what Jack says. I was thinking a centre parting for the ‘gruaige’ as I rounded the corner and saw the bus doors close with a loud hiss as it separated the almost rans from the nearly departed. “There’s an extra behind,” the driver shouted. Eventually the ‘extra’ rounded the corner with ‘guess who’ stood front and center, picture-framed by the thick rubber around the windscreen. This was Percy’s moment, he would decide who would travel on his Charabanc. I positioned myself in front of an attractive couple that Percy was sure to allow on board. “Seats on top,” he announced to the boarding passengers, drenching them with his spittle.

I found a seat at the back where the smokey diesel and warm vibrating seats sent me ,as expected, into a trance like slumber. “That’s the trouble with people these days, too many of them are just relying on other people to solve their problems. Their problems, young Alexander. They should get up earlier or get a bike and cycle if they have to be somewhere at a certain time.” There I was in the backyard of number 10 Downing Street. Maggie Thatcher, her head popped around the back door, her blue curlers still in situ and a cigarette hanging from her lips.

One eye blinking from the smoke, she beckoned me from behind the washing line that was drying her blue undergarments. As she opened the door, she revealed herself in a very tight-fitting blue silk dressing gown. Her bosoms were like loaded missiles and one of them was aimed right at me. “Come in Alexander, sit,” she said. I sat across from Denis Thatcher who ignored me and continued to read his newspaper. “That will be all Dinny,” she said. He got up and took his Daily Telegraph which concealed a copy of the ‘saucy Sun’ and left. “Don’t think I didn’t see that” she called after him. Placing a blue floral designed china cup and saucer in front of me, she poured a cup of steaming hot tea. She sidled up to me and pulled my head to her bosom and said, “Alexander,” she always called me Alexander. “Forget Tina, you need someone more mature.”

As I sat there surrounded by her bosoms I could hear her muffled speech about Northern Ireland and the hunger strikers . I knew I’d never go hungry where I was. It was so comfortable there and I just wanted to nuzzle up and sleep forever. I could hear Maggie’s muffled tones as she said “You can’t make an omlette without breaking some balls,” But as far as my balls were concerned I have to say I– “GINGER,” roared Percy, his big sweaty belly pressed into my face. That’s ten pence more you owe me, you paid to Kelly’s corner that was two stops back. I managed to escape his sweaty blubbery clutch and jump of the moving bus.

The extended bus ride had now caused me to be late for school so rather than trying to sneak in to ‘double Biology’, I headed for Dirty Dans the school chipper/ coffee shop, home for unpunctual and wayward school children. I would take refuge there till first break. It was at break when my buddy Jack came in, his creased forehead warned of bad news. “Alex where were you? ‘Kojak’ is swinging the leather, looking for you” (all bald teachers in the eighties were nicknamed Kojak). “He’s called you Alexander the Late and says Memnon awaits.”

I explained to Jack about my mother’s interception that, although minimal it put my timing out by quite a bit. His reaction to this piece of seemingly innocuous information threw me. He stopped mid-bite into his ‘Marathon’ bar and looking at me wide-eyed and running his hand through his wispy pale blonde hair (inspirationally parted in the middle) he asked, “Did she say chat or talk?” “Jesus Jack, I can’t remember exactly, why?” “I’ll tell you why Aleco me auld buddy, if she said ‘talk’ it’s not good. “Jack, what are you on about?” “Al, the ‘Talk’ is the facts of life, the how babies are made. The ‘it’s more than a special hug,’ talk.

I had to stop my mother as she started to explain how she and me Da made babies.” “Jaysus, how’d ye stop her?” “I told her I already knew and that we had covered it in school. Alex, this is what you’re going to have to do unless you want to hear things about your Ma and Da making babies, and Jesus wept Al, there are seven of youse. Then there’s all the stuff about personal choice, protection, condominiums and French people writing to each other.” “What will I do?” “Alex, as soon as she starts, tell her you know everything. You can tell her I told you cause my Ma told me and we spoke to one of the priests to make sure we had our facts right. Sero bero Al, you do not want to hear your Ma talk about sex.”

I don’t, I thought. This is one conversation I won’t be having. I was dreading going home. The bus journey home was usually occupied with either a chat with Tina or a game of ‘would you rather’ with Barney (a ‘bus only’ friend). But today no Tina, no game. Barney wasn’t speaking to me as I ‘accidentally’ broke his ‘nudie pen’. No loss though as my impending ‘Talk’ with my mother was on my mind. So now I was home I waited and it seemed forever until she called me into the sitting room.

The sun’s rays caught the smoke swirling up from her cigarette and her smoking told me this was serious. “Sit down Alex, I need to tell you something.” “Mam you don’t need to say anything. I already know,” I said. “What?” “I heard –” “Oh Alex, did you hear your father and me the other night? I thought the house was empty–” “What? No. Jesus Ma. Please, flippin hell. I was going to say I heard about it in school, Jack told me.” “Jack?” she said. “Yeah, his mother told him and we checked our facts with a priest and he told us that we were correct.” “His Mother? A priest? What priest?” “Father Donnelly.” “What exactly did Father Donnelly say?” “Not much really, just “that’s right boys,” after we had gone through everything Jack’s Ma told us.” “And how does Jack’s mother know?” “Eh Ma, all the adults know.” “They do? So, seems I’m the last one to find out.” “What? What do you mean last to find out? Flippin hell when did you find out?” “The other night, I had my suspicions something was up but it was only when your father decided to tell me that I realised what was going on.” “Wait, you had your suspicions? I mean what did you, like how were, surely you, flip sake there are seven of us, I mean, what the fu-” “Language Alex.” “Sorry.” “Seven of who?” she said. “Us, your children,” I said. “Oh, Alex you guys are not to blame –” “Eh, I know that, we weren’t around until you and Dad decided to–” “Decided to what Alex? What do you think I’m talking about?” “The ‘Talk’.” “What Talk?” “The talk about babies, special hugs, protection from the church and the French postal system.”

My mother began to simultaneously laugh and cry. Lighting a new cigarette from the old, inhaling and then on the exhale, she said, “Your father and I are separating. He is moving out and leaving us. He has met someone else.”

I can’t remember the rest of the conversation. There was the usual it’s ‘no reflection on you’ and ‘we will always be here for you’ bit, but she never expanded on who the someone else was and thankfully at the time never mentioned it was a ‘he’ who had recently left the priesthood. Still, my head was thumping with the information I had. I was weak at the knees. After a few minutes of silence, she asked was I okay and if I had any questions. I had a million of them, my first being could we now listen to something other than RTE news in the morning. But in truth I was dazed and felt like I’d been hit by one of Brother Lamb’s famous uppercuts.

I still remember poor old Barry McKeown who, after back-to-back biology and religion lessons taught by the infamous Brother Lamb, where in Biology he explained female impregnation via the penis and then forty minutes later in religion informed us of Mary’s impregnation, not by Joseph or anyone else’s penis but by God’s blessing or something. Lamb while wiping the board, asked (rhetorically) “any questions?” Mc Keown, hand raised and ignoring the collective gasp from his classmates, uttered those now immortal first few words, “Brother, did God have a long invisible Mickey that he could–” The last we saw of Barry was him being carried out of the class unconscious. I now know how he felt.

The next day Jack was waiting for me at the school gate. Jack, if he hadn’t anything himself to worry about, would borrow someone else’s problem until his own anxieties returned. “How’d it go?” he asked. “What?” I said, downplaying the situation. “Your Ma, the ‘Talk’?” “Ah that, nah it was nothing, just about music lessons and stuff.”

We drew hard on the shared cigarette and then the shout went up warning of the Principal’s approach. Twenty-five cigarette butts flew like fireflies through the air and the yard was quickly vacated. There were no further questions from Jack, besides, he had found a new worry of his own. Some random guy asked him if he was an albino because of his wispy blonde hair. That comment and his pubic hair or lack of, was now causing him some angst. I was going to tell him about Maggie Thatcher but I thought better of it.

The weekend came and went and on Monday morning my father drove me to school so he could say goodbye or at least try to. I met Jack and we were fairly sure that he was not an albino and his pubes would thicken in time. He liked my centre parting, but the bus home would be the real test. That afternoon with hope in my heart I boarded the 16C bus. I saw Tina, I also saw Kavanagh sitting beside her. Tina barely gave a glance at my hard-worked hairstyle. Percy approved though with a “look at you Ginger.” I sat alone tired of the whole thing and began to snooze. I could hear Tina and Kavanagh behind me, giggling, a couple’s giggle. I wanted to turn around and look. Then it came, “No, Alexander, don’t look back, WE ARE NOT FOR TURNING…” The End.




RTE News Reader Ray Kennedy features in new video with Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE student


RTE newsreader Ray Kennedy with media & journalism student Laura Byrne

RTE Newsreader Ray Kennedy visited Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE recently to film an “ETB heroes” video with our media & journalism student Laura Byrne.

Kennedy, who is a former journalism student of CDCFE talks in the film about how doing a PLC course led him to the successful path he followed. The video features him reminiscing about his time in the college and also offering advice to Laura Byrne about how to be successful in the industry. The newscaster commented ““My ETB made me into a journalist. The job has brought me all around the world, but it all began here”.

Applications for our Media & Journalism courses are open now – click the “apply now” button on our homepage.

Watch the video here:

End of Year Events at Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE


Upcoming events at CDCFEEnd of Year Events at Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE

We are coming towards the end of the academic year, which means it is time for the students of Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education to showcase the culmination of their course work and projects.

We will host a series of events which are open to the public and we are particularly looking forward  to welcoming prospective students and their family and friends to sample what CDCFE has to offer.

In the last of week of April, our media department students will participate in “Radio Week”. They will broadcast live on our college radio station “CDCFE radio”. This student radio station is currently streaming online. Search it, or simply ask Alexa to “enable CDCFE Radio”. The project will involve students from the media production, journalism and social media content creation courses and will allow them the opportunity to produce and broadcast shows about the issues that matter most to them. Listen in and make requests to us on Watsapp 0892137170.

On the 25th April the Photography and the Graphic Design QQI Level 6 students will showcase their work in the “Photographics 2023” exhibition, which will take place in the Coolock campus canteen. All are welcome to attend this event which highlights the best work from these creative students. The virtual exhibition is already live online and can be viewed here:

artsteps | Colaiste Dhulaigh’s “Back to Normal” Exhibition 2023

In the Kilbarrack campus our health sciences department are holding a Health Awareness Day. The 25th April will see students from our pre-university nursing, occupational therapy assistant, healthcare and physiotherapy assistant, pre university sports science, sport rehabilitation & exercise therapy and speech and language therapy assistant courses participating in a day of raising awareness about health and well-being. Come along and take part in some of their activities.

On the 11th May, students throughout the college will showcase their work in a “Farewell Festival” in the Raheny campus on Springdale Road. This fun day will give students from courses such as art & design, entrepreneurship, fashion design, craft production and many more, an opportunity to show and sell their handmade products. Refreshments will be provided at this outdoor event and all are welcome to attend.

Our final event of the year takes place in The Lighthouse Cinema in Smithfield where students of our film production HND, media production HND, Animation HND and the Film Production BA & Animation BA which are accredited by University of Wolverhampton, will have a screening of their short films. Many of these shorts will be entered into international festivals. All are welcome to attend this exciting event, but arrive early to avoid disappointment as spaces are limited.

Our students have worked hard all year on these projects and are excited to showcase their high-quality work. We look forward to welcoming you to these events and hope you will enjoy experiencing all that Coláiste Dhúlaigh CFE has to offer.



Winners of the SCC Creative Writing Competition Announced

Four students from CDCFE’s Creative Writing Course are winners in the Sports & Cultural Council (SCC) Creative Writing Competition.

The presentation took place in The Teacher’s Club in Parnell Street and prizes were presented by IFTA nominated Film Director Frank Berry, who is himself a past pupil of Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education.

Frank presented “highly commended” awards to David Larkin for his short story “Patient”, and to Jack Lynch for his short story “Boogeyman”. Suzanne O’Connor was highly commended for her short story “The Perfect Princess Life”. Will Doyle won 2nd place for his short story “Scaredy Cat”

Course coordinator Laura Roche says “all the tutors on the creative writing course are very proud of our students’ achievements. It is lovely to see the development of their writing throughout the year and the confidence that the SCC award gives them”.

“The Quill”, A collection of work by the creative writing class of ’23 is coming soon. Check out some of the featured prize-winning work.

The CDETB Sports and Cultural Council (SCC) promotes and co-ordinates sporting and cultural events for all full-time CDETB students.


L-R  Suzanne O’Connor, Frank Berry, David Larkin, Jack Lynch & Will Doyle

The Graphic Design level 6 Group collaborative project for Bewley’s Ireland

Graphic design students coffee container project 

Every year we encourage our design students to engage with live projects and this year the graphic design level 6 team and tutor Aisling Brunell were lucky to work with a local well-known company, Bewley’s Coffee. They asked our graphic design students to create a new design for their coffee container at their headquarters in Northern Cross. Dublin Canvas had recommended our students for the job, and we were delighted to get involved. The process began with Bewley’s marketing department delivering the brief to our students. Bewley’s were in the process of rebranding; and wanted the container to be contemporary and vibrant, speak to the community and attract customers to the new location.  

Our students began a collaborative process to create a winning design for the project. The project started  with in-depth ideas generation processes which led to a series of design development sketches from the team.  

 Concept drawings for graphic design students Bewleys coffee container project

Once all students produced a final design proposal the group presented their concept and the team voted on the best four proposals to present to Bewley’s Marketing team. After a lot of deliberation, they chose our student Marsha Koshyrenkova’s design. All students produced excellent submissions, but we all agreed the final design was well suited to the brief. 

The students started to prep the container and got ready for graphic designer and mural artist John Brady to complete the design by mapping out and spray-painting the container to an extremely high standard. 

Have a look at the hard work and fun the students had prepping the container. They did this through harsh weather conditions as getting the job done for their client was always their priority. The students showed tremendous commitment and dedication to the project and as their teacher I would like to thank them for all the work they put into the project.  

Our photography students did an amazing photoshoot for the project and also had to work in challenging rainy conditions. The results are superb, and the graphic design team would like to thank them for their contribution to the project. 


Bewleys erected a plaque with the following : 

The graphic design students at Coláiste Dhúlaigh worked together to develop a design concept that incorporates bold geometric forms and colours, creating a vibrant design that would attract a new wave of customers to the Bewley’s Coffee container. Bewley’s and CDCFE are firmly embedded in the Northside community therefore the design speaks to the diverse, colourful, and vibrant inhabitants and visitors to the area. The shapes on the container create a sense of ebb and flow that represents a new Ireland. The graphic design class of 2023 stands for inclusion, diversity and creativity which brings people together …..like coffee. 

Final design for Bewleys coffee container project

Bewleys have since used the coffee container in a number of press releases and marketing campaigns to promote their Barista Wojciech Tysler who will represent Ireland at the World Barista Championships in June

Featured Bewleys project coverage in The Daily Star

Read More:




 Follow the art and design department on Instagram for more updates on current and future projects  

Coláiste Dhúlaigh Dublin CDCFE (@artanddesignatcdcfe) • Instagram photos and videos


Lord Mayor of Dublin opens Floristry Course Pop-Up Flower Shop “Wild Blooms”

Lord Mayor of Dublin Caroline Conroy, officially opens CDCFE’s Floristry Pop-up shop “Wild Blooms”

The Professional Floristry course at Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education welcomed Lord Mayor of Dublin Caroline Conroy this week to officially open their pop-up flower shop “Wild Blooms” in the CDCFE Kilbarrack campus.

The shop opened for two days, selling spring flowers which were locally sourced by the professional floristry students. Displays were made using upcycled and sustainable materials. Many of the bouquets were arranged using locally foraged flowers and proceeds from the venture will go to the “Feed our Homeless” charity. The event was organised as part of the retail display and work experience modules on the course.

The ribbon was cut by Lord Mayor Conroy who commented that she was “impressed by the creativity and skill of the women of the course who made the decision to return to education and are mothers juggling family life”.

Course coordinator Anita Elliot says “The Lord Mayor’s visit was such an honour for the professional floristry students and the college, there was great excitement. The students worked so hard to bring this event together and the experience really prepares them for working in a professional setting”.

Applications for professional floristry and over 60 other courses are now open online for programmesstarting in September.


Professional Floristry (@floristry_at_cdcfe) • Instagram photos and videos

Streets to Home – Feed Our Homeless




The Performing Arts Course Presents “A-typical Rainbow” & “2 Weeks Aye” – March 30th & 31st

The Performing Arts students at Coláiste Dhúlaigh College of Further Education would like to invite you to their end of year performances of 2 weeks eh and A-Typical Rainbow on Thursday 30th and Friday 31st March at The Sean O’Casey theatre, Eastwall at 7.30pm

About the Shows by CDCFE’s Dry Ice Theatre Company:

Missing out on life’s biggest milestones and navigating life through the lens of zoom and TikTok, 2 weeks eh’ is a thrilling exploration of how the covid 19 pandemic impacted our lives.  This piece was devised by Higher National Certificate (first year) students drawing on life experiences, interviews, and research.

Join us straight afterwards for The Irish premiere of A-Typical Rainbow. Based on real events from the perspective of the writer and the autistic community, JJ Green’s A-Typical Rainbow is an uplifting play about the experience of growing up neurodivergent and queer in early 2000s. 

It revolves around ‘Boy’ as he navigates and sees the world differently from most people. Where ‘they’ see monochrome, he sees the world in vivid and brilliant technicolour with mermaids, wolves and dragons galore. As ‘Boy’ grows up, he faces increasing pressure to conform to the black and white logic of the ‘real’ world, a way of thinking that doesn’t make sense to him and forces him to suppress his unique and beautiful personality.  

Performed and produced by Higher National Diploma (HND) students. 




We hope you can join us.