The first in a series of blogs on Apprenticeships by Patrick Cantellow, a YEUK Youth Ambassador
With so many apprenticeships to choose from, it can be difficult to find an apprenticeship you will enjoy that’s right for you. It can also be difficult to decide if you should leave education and become an apprentice. In this first blog, I will try to explain the benefits of being an apprentice and where to look for one.
Firstly, all apprenticeships offer some form of training or course. For example, I am about to embark on an apprenticeship in Digital Marketing whilst gaining a Level 3 Diploma with the possibility of moving onto Level 4, also known as a Foundation Degree. A number of universities now accept apprenticeship qualifications in related courses – so if going to university is something you would like to progress to, go check with the university you are interested in first to see if they would be likely to accept you.
Another thing that comes to many minds is the money. There is no denying that the £3.30 minimum wage for apprentices is dire for what can be in many cases, the same workload as those on the National Minimum Wage. However, you must remember that it’s not all bad, on average, apprentices earn £50,000 more in their lifetime than university graduates. Experience is just as important as qualifications in today’s world.
If you’re still not convinced about apprenticeships, you might be interested in these successful business people, as well as the winner of The Apprentice in 2015, Joseph Valente, all of whom were also apprentices.
A number of tools are available to help in finding the right apprenticeship for you. There is the government funded apprenticeship finder, however this requires you to sign up. I personally recommend Apprentice Career, a tool from 3AAA. You may benefit from giving your local 3AAA a call, or speak to your school careers advisor who can offer advice on the next steps in your education or career. Becoming a member of YEUK (for free!) will also provide you with helpful information and resources on employment and careers.
If you want to leave education, but at the same time don’t want to go straight into work then an apprenticeship may not be for you. Find something you are passionate about, such as sport, and actively go hunting for apprenticeships in that area. You never know, you might find something you love while getting experience and a salary at the same time.
Applied for an apprenticeship and got to the interview stage? In my next blog, I will give you the best tips for preparing and answering questions in an interview.
If you’d like to know more about being a YEUK Youth Ambassador and have opportunities to write blogs and articles like this one on issues that affect you, as well as the chance to attend events and debates, click here to find out more and have your say.