THE WORLD is constantly changing, and with economic uncertainty and fierce competition for jobs, there’s never been a greater need to have marketable skills.
But you don’t need to sit in a class all day to get them!
With an apprenticeship, you can earn while you learn and gain recognised qualifications as you work.
What are apprenticeships?
As employees, apprentices earn a wage and work alongside experienced staff to gain job-specific skills.
Off the job, usually on a day-release basis, apprentices receive training to work towards nationally recognised qualifications.
Apprenticeships can take between one and four years to complete depending on the level of apprenticeship, the apprentices’ ability and the industry sector.
The minimum salary is £2.50 per hour, however, many apprentices earn significantly more.
Who are they for?
Apprenticeships are open to all age groups above 16 years-old whether you are just leaving school, have been working for years or are seeking to start a new career.
You just need to be living in England and not taking part in full-time education.
There may be different entry requirements depending on the apprenticeship and the industry sector.
However competition for places with employers can be tough, so you will need to show that you are committed and aware of your responsibilities to both yourself and the company which would employ you.
You also need to be happy to work as both part of a team and individually, and be able to use your own initiative.
Apprenticeships are designed with the help of the employers in the industry, so they offer a structured programme that takes you through the skills you need to do a job well.
There are targets and checks to make sure that your employer is supporting you and you are making progress.
As an employee you will be in the workplace for most of your time as the majority of training takes place on the job.
The rest usually takes place at a local college or a specialist training organisation. You can complete this off-the-job training on day release or over a number of days.
The amount of time you spend varies according to your apprenticeship.
It could be anything from one day every other fortnight to two days every week.
So all the things you study will be useful in your job and help you succeed in your future career.
Employers all over the country recognise and value apprenticeships as they show that you’ve been trained in the skills that they need.
Once you’ve completed your apprenticeship you can choose to carry on working, undertake more advanced training or even go on to higher education.