The I’m happy coaching framework: from volunteer to paid employee

Shannon White, Neil Bikcer , Siobhan Flynn, Michaela Black, Moore Adrian

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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The IM HAPPY [1] [2] [3] (IMproving Hopes, Aspirations, Potential and Prospects in the Youth) project is a Department for Communities (DfC) [2] funded research project based in Ulster University’s Coleraine Campus, Northern Ireland (NI), United Kingdom (UK). It delivers free Information Technology (IT) classes in Robotics, 3D printing, Web Development and more, to people in the local NRAs [4] (Neighbourhood Renewal Areas) of Coleraine in order to increase confidence and raise aspirations.
The project was launched in November 2013 with three RAs (Research Assistants) and a steering committee of four University academic staff. One of the original targets for the project was to train a number of volunteers to a level where they were competent and comfortable with the content to assist the IM HAPPY team in the delivery of classes. These volunteers are known as COACHes (COmputer ACcredited Helpers) once they have completed a number of IM HAPPY modules including two in Computer ‘Coaching’.
Since November 2013 the IM HAPPY project has trained 19 COACHes. In the past 2 years there has been more of focus on the COACHes delivering classes and the project team has subsequently reduced to two members of academic staff, a Research Assistant (RA) and two placement students to facilitate this. In April 2018 the IM HAPPY project received funding to employ registered COACHes as casual staff on the project for the planning and delivery of classes within the IM HAPPY catchment areas. It is anticipated that one legacy of the project will be that COACHes will continue to deliver classes and workshops after the project funding eventually ends.
This paper will outline how participants are developed as COACHes on the IM HAPPY . We also examine the profile of COACHes, the project modules they have completed and opportunities for COACHes to be involved within the project in both a voluntary and paid capacity.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationICERI2018 Proceedings
Subtitle of host publication11th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation Seville, Spain. 12-14 November, 2018
PublisherInternational Academy of Technology, Education and Development
Number of pages659
ISBN (Print)978-84-09-05948-5
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 12 Nov 2018
EventInternational Conference of Education, Research and Innovation 2018: 11th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation Seville, Spain. 12-14 November, 2018 - Seville, Seville, Spain
Duration: 12 Nov 201814 Nov 2018

Publication series

PublisherICERI2018 Proceedings
ISSN (Print)2340-1095


ConferenceInternational Conference of Education, Research and Innovation 2018
Abbreviated titleICERI2018


  • STEM
  • Tutoring
  • Mentoring
  • Coaching
  • Training
  • Volunteering


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