JUST BEYOND the blue coat rack (at left) is The Mall, a meeting room inside the Absolute Hotel where I will interview 18 redundant Dell employees today for possible entry to a programme run by the Limerick Institute of Technology. The ex-Dell workers want to use money from the European Globalisation Fund to embark on a very structured higher education path that leads to a Certificate in Web Promotion. It's a challenging course with lots of hands-on field work. The eerie thing about the interview venue is that it is the same place used by Jeffrey Kaye several years ago to chat with people in Limerick about the closing of the Dell factory. Kaye went on to air a PBS segment on the visit and to write a book about the fall of manufacturing in Ireland. From their application forms, it appears that 12 of the people taking the Web Promotion for Business Course were directly involved in the manufacturing and packaging of Dell components in Limerick. The education programme we have set up for these people will be one of the most innovative things I've done as an adult educator. Upon successful completion, graduates will be able to leverage mobile tools (an Android phone and a webcam-equipped laptop) when producing field reports that promote local businesses in Limerick, Clare and Tipperary. I expect several of them will make guest posts to my blog as they explain facets of their 12-week journey in higher education.
"Irish Jobs Polish Jobs" from two years ago (with video).