There are many advantages in training as an Apprentice. Here are just a few:
- You get paid. The level of pay depends on your employer and the skill
area in which you are training. But, compared to staying on at school or
college, where you may have to work in the evenings or at the weekends
to earn some money, you're going to be better off.
- You will learn by a combination of attending college, your training provider
and your employer. You are out of the school classroom and much of the
learning will be by doing things rather than having to remember facts.
So if you don't enjoy school then this may be a better option for you.
- You gain recognised qualifications - NVQs, Key Skills and a Technical
- You will be trained to do a job. So, unlike those who stay on at school
and take A Levels, you will have a qualification that shows that you have
the skills necessary to do that job. Employers know that they will not
have to spend a lot of time training you - you will have the ability to
'hit the ground running' and, all being well, a good reference from your
employer to support you.
- If you want to gain a higher qualification such as a HNC, HND, Foundation
Degree or Honours Degree and you have a supportive employer, you can continue
to study on a part-time basis while continuing to receive a wage. In this
way you can avoid the huge debts that full-time undergraduates face.
There may be some disadvantages - it depends on the skill area and your
preferred method of learning:
- If you want to go to university it may take longer to get there with
some Apprenticeships, depending on the subject area.
- If you want to continue to study at a higher level on a part-time basis
this will also take longer - but remember, you need to balance this against
the future debt of full-time study.
- You may be more suited to classroom study and full time education.
- Not all occupations offer Apprenticeships, so you may have no option
but to take the academic route.
- The range of courses you can study at higher level may be more limited.
Universities still understand A levels better than Apprenticeships, but
this is changing and, as long as you choose a course that is a natural
progression from your training, this should not stop you.
So, make your choice - an Apprenticeship is just another way of pursuing
your career, it’s not second best. In fact, many employers prefer apprentice-trained
people to those who have just left school, college or university.
Click here for further
information on Apprenticeships.