Borders College

Declan blogs about his career in Early Learning and Childcare (ELC)

ELC and Me

Declan Mckendrick

Why am I interested in ELC?

I guess, if I was honest, my desire to work in an early learning and childcare setting comes all the way from my own personal experiences in Primary School.

I was in a small Primary School that had maybe seventy to a hundred children, maximum. My class was made up of a majority of girls (there were maybe five or six boys) and there was also a majority of female teachers, so I didn’t really have a lot of male role models in school. I had always thought of teaching as a female job. I saw it as an amazing job that would be cool to do, but I never really saw it as an option for me. That was until primary four or five, when I finally got the experience of being taught by a male teacher. This was one of the best experiences in my life, not only was I being taught by someone that my tiny little child brain thought could truly understand me but it also gave me a male role model that I could truly be proud of and look up to, and it finally clicked into place that I could do whatever I wanted no matter what gender I was. To this day that teacher is still an amazing role model as well as an inspiration for a lot of things in my life, and became a goal to strive towards: “If I can grow up to be half the man he is then I can truly live my life happy, knowing that I have done well and carried on his work.”

How did I get into ELC?

Now that’s a bit more of a complicated question. My journey into childcare was started by another one of the great inspirations in my life, my mother. During my time in primary school my mother became a child-minder so that she could stay close to home and keep an eye on us, so I got to watch her look after children every day and to see what kind of effect her job had on other children. This helped me see how truly important she is and why I’m so lucky to have her in my life, so as soon as I was able I decided to give back to her by helping out during holidays and whenever I could. I spent a lot of time in high school “volunteering” for her and helping her at groups and with some of the younger ones, and this was one of my favourite things to do (even if I seemed like I was hating it at the time). Then when it came around to sixth year and I wanted to do work experience it was almost a no-brainer as to where I wanted to go. I wanted to go back to my old primary school to volunteer and to give back to them as a thank you for making me the person I am, and as luck had it I got to work with the role model and inspiration that started this whole idea. Now (three years later) I have two care qualifications, a job in an after school club (that I love), and I’m working towards my first childcare qualification!

Declan Mckendrick

  • If you are interested in a career in Early Learning and Childcare why not take a look at the range of options available to you from Borders College - Click here.

Borders College addressing gender imbalance – one student at a time!
Working towards the Scottish Government’s ambition to ensure equitable admissions by gender.

Published: Thu 21st Feb, 2019