Alan has been close to entrepreneurship since he was knee-high to a grasshopper. He worked his way up in his father’s toys and stationery business, leading to 30 years of success in sales and purchasing. He worked in various wholesale companies over the years, taking him to Germany, Hong Kong, and back to Ireland. He caught the eye of the Roches Stores’ headhunters, who made him a Senior Group Buyer, and he’s worked in DIY retail and pharmaceutical distribution.

Alan finished his MBA at Liverpool John Moores University with an award-winning dissertation. With so much experience of the working world, Alan decided he’d be well placed to add a dash of vitality and worldliness to the education sector. He wanted to improve on his own experiences of traditional learning styles as a student. With this in mind, he did a Diploma in 3rd Level Teaching and Learning at TU Dublin. He then lectured on Operations Management and Marketing for four years at Dublin Business School and other colleges. The turning point came when he enrolled on the Innovation Academy’s Creativity and Innovation for Education course. He liked what he saw, and when a position opened up at the Academy Alan jumped at the chance.

Alan facilitates many of the Academy’s courses and is Programme Director for the very course that first brought him here. He is currently a candidate for a Doctorate of Education at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David. He is hoping to explore the impact of creativity, innovation, and the entrepreneurial mindset in the school and college sector.

In his downtime, Alan is an active member of his community through local schools, his church, and supporting the elderly. He chooses golf, tennis, and cycling for all his endorphin needs. Most of all he finds contentment in the company of like-minded people bursting with positive energy.

Why I joined the UCD Innovation Academy…

“I really believe in the ‘Learning by Doing’ principle and entrepreneurial thinking as a key concept in education. There’s nowhere like the Academy for prioritising this kind of experiential education.”