College Choice – A Different Pathway with BIFE


Bray Institute of Further Education (BIFE) are full steam ahead preparing for the new academic year and a return to relative normality in September after the unprecedented nature of the last year with COVID-19 restrictions. While in many cases students, schools and parents see the CAO as the ‘be all and end all’ for those seeking third level education, nothing could be further from the truth according to Gabriel Allen, deputy principal at Bray Institute of Further Education (BIFE). “Over recent years many new avenues have opened up to students to enable them pursue their dream career via a different route.”

BIFE’s Open Day on Friday 27th August from 10am to 1pm will showcase the large variety of courses they have in the College ranging from Art & Design, Media, Sport, Psychology, Body Therapies, Science, Business, Nursing, Theatre/Dance and much more. “We have over 70 full-time courses to choose from, all progressing on to Higher Education Institutes in Ireland and abroad”, according to Deputy Principal Gabriel Allen.

He added, “Further Education offers a learner, who may not have achieved the required CAO points, the opportunity to gain advanced entry onto honours degree programmes.”

The huge range of courses available at BIFE offers learners fabulous opportunities, not only for those looking for additional skills or hoping to go directly into employment, but also as an alternative route on to a college course in a university or institute of technology in Ireland or abroad. Over the past few years, graduates of BIFE have achieved honours degrees across a wide range of programmes, opening up a myriad of career opportunities from graphic design to performing arts to psychology.

This year BIFE will offer Higher National Diplomas in the following:

•              Fine Art – Art Practice

•              Acting

•              Dance

•              TV & Film production

•              Music Production

•              Music Performance

•              Traditional Irish Music

•              Graphic Design

As Gabriel Allen explained, “These eight courses will allow graduating students to proceed to the final year of an honours Degree Programme in Ireland or Britain if that is their ultimate ambition.”

BIFE are introducing the following new courses this September:

  • Traditional Irish & Folk Music Performance – BTEC HND Level 6+
  • Brewing & Distilling Technology – QQI Level 5
  • Emergency Care Studies (Pre-paramedic, Fire & Ambulance) – QQI Level 5
  • Barista, Pastry & Baking – C&G/QQI Level 5
  • Tour Guiding – QQI Level 6

Allen assured that there are many opportunities for mature students to study and progress at BIFE. “All courses have valuable certification and offer progression routes to Higher Education, yet you don’t need CAO points to study at Bray Institute.”

To discover more about the courses available at BIFE, prospective students are invited to attend their ‘Open Day’ on Friday 27th August from 10am to 1pm. Applications for September 2021 Courses are now open. Apply on-line at or call the Institute any day during office hours on 01-2829668 for further information between 9am and 4pm.

Pictured: Dr. Deirdre Keyes CE KWETB, Tom Fortune BIFE board of Management, Simon Harris Minister of Further & Higher Education,  Gabriel Allen Deputy Principal BIFE, Ray Tedders Principal BIFE

Sarah Brooks

Sarah Brooks

Sarah has worked in marketing and content creation for many years. In her role at Newsgroup, she is the online editor of with a particular interest in local news and events. Sarah also works closely with our editorial team on our printed editions in Tallaght, Lucan, Clondalkin and Rathcoole/Saggart. If you have a story and would like to make contact please email Sarah at



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