News & Events

Upskilling Women returning to the Workforce

25 May 2021
Rejuvenate Autumn 2021

We are delighted to announce that Rejuvenate Autumn 2021 will commence on Tuesday 5th October.


According to the most recent Irish census data, the workforce participation rate for women aged 35 to 55 is 72% – 20% lower than for men. Significant numbers of highly educated, experienced, professional women take a career break for a variety of reasons, planning to return to the workforce when the time is right.

However, women ‘returners’ face significant obstacles when they decide to return to paid employment. Employers and recruitment agencies can be reluctant to employ people without current work experience and many women don’t make it past the CV screening process.

University College Cork, in conjunction with Taste4Success Skillnet, recognised the value of encouraging professional women to return to their careers and developed an innovative programme called Rejuvenate to support them in their quest.                                                                                                             

Do you want to return to work but worry that your skills are out of date? Do you lack the confidence to apply for jobs?

Many women fear returning to the workplace, having taken time out to care for family, been made redundant, taken a career break, faced ill health or for one of a myriad of other reasons that life can throw at us.

A loss of confidence, loss of flexibility and worries about relevance of skill-sets are often cited as common reasons for women to postpone or avoid seeking a return to paid employment.

Added to this, the feeling of “out-of-dateness” is a concern for many highly skilled women.

Would you like to return to the workforce?

If so, Rejuvenate may be the course for you. It has been specifically designed to help women build their confidence again and to learn practical job hunting skills and techniques to help in their job search and subsequent re-entry into the workforce.

This fully funded course offers a small group of women the opportunity to explore the mechanics of returning to work, alongside some reflective activities to help you plan for your career progression into the future. 

Date:    Weekly from 4th October for 11 weeks

Time:    9.30am - 12pm every Tuesday morning

Venue:  Online - Participants will need a computer with a good WIFI/Broadband connection

What exactly does Rejuvenate offer?
Course topics include:
  1. Self-assessment and Training Needs Analysis, Professional Motivation
  2. Strategies to build Confidence, Resilience and Assertiveness
  3. Professional Network Development
  4. Mentoring and Active Career Management
  5. Key job searching skills – CVs, Cover Letters, Interview Preparation, Working with Job Agencies
  6. Digital Skills - LinkedIn, Social Media Management and Zoom
  7. Working in a Team and Balancing Work and Life
  8. Work placement may be physical work experience (subject to COVID-19 guidelines) or a project that will be assessed
What did previous Rejuvenate participants say about the course?

The inaugural Rejuvenate course was held in Cork in Autumn 2019. Rejuvenate 2020 ran online and feedback from both groups of participants was very positive.

I got my confidence back both in myself and in my ability to re-join the workforce. I would strongly advise anyone in the position to do the Rejuvenate course to grab the opportunity with both hands”.  2019 Participant

The Rejuvenate programme has been a hugely positive experience in my life, the support and encouragement received has been invaluable. It has given me a new lease of life and the focus and determination to build a new career. Advice on CVs, interview skills and presentations has been fantastic”. 2019 Participant 

A must for any woman who has stayed at home to mind their children, it is a journey of rediscovering your potential. An inspiring course”.  2019 Participant

“For the first time in probably 10 years, I actually began to think of returning to the workforce because the course gave me the confidence to realise it was a possibility”. 2020 Participant


Hear what participant Colette Kealy had to say during her Radio Interview with KCLR - just click through to 42:45: 

Or read Colette's interview in Agriland

 Taste 4 Success Skillnet and University College Cork launch Rejuvenate 2020

Further Information:

In 2021, due to COVID-19 restrictions, the course is being run fully online, enabling women from around the country to participate. 

Further information is available by visiting the Taste4SuccessSkillnet website. 

We would love to hear from you and will answer any queries you may have.

Simply email or contact Dr Joanne Uí Chrualaoich on 086 3840587 or Caroline Seacy on 086 854 1005. 

Please note that there are no fees for this course as it is fully funded by Taste4Success Skillnet.

To Register:

Simply click HERE and fill out the online Application Form.

We are experiencing significant demand for this free Rejuvenate Programme so we recommend that you complete and submit your application form as soon as possible.

Thank you for your interest and we look forward to hearing from you.

University College Cork and Taste 4 Success Skillnet were delighted to receive the IITD Best Diversity and Inclusion Award 2020 for our Rejuvenate Programme, which recognised an outstanding and innovative initiative, focused on ensuring full access to and participation in the workplace for all.

The Food Institute

Room 354 A-D, Food Science and Technology Building, College Road, University College Cork ,