Aishling O'Toole

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Aishling O'Toole
Aishling O'Toole, Project Lead, South East Technological University Waterford

Aishling O'Toole is the Project Lead for the National RPL Project at SETU Waterford.

Aishling has worked in a number of different roles at Waterford Institute of Technology over the last 20 years, each of which has placed the student at the centre of her work. The RPL role is no different. She was involved in the Students’ Union as a Sabbatical Officer, worked as the Student Retention and Engagement Officer, as well as the Academic Administration manager. This has given her a very rounded perspective on learners, the student life cycle and how processes and procedures affect the student community. Across all of her professional experience, she has worked with students across the phases of process change to assist with the development of information and tools to ensure that materials/content are friendly, useful, easy to understand and navigate. She is passionate about ensuring the student's voice is heard while creating robust and fair approaches to processes and brings that same ethos to her RPL role.

It is becoming ever clearer in our rapidly changing world that work is evolving at a similar pace and to keep up with that, we will all need to continue to educate and re-educate ourselves. HEIs have a distinct role within that, of which RPL and lifelong learning are key pillars. To do this the university needs to be flexible and responsive, supporting learners, the region and external stakeholders to the benefit of all involved. By taking a partnership approach, with the student at the centre, building on best practice nationally and internationally, aligning to the Framework for Recognition of Prior Learning in Higher Education, Aishling looks forward to helping SETU create a coherent and consistent approach to RPL.