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An apprenticeship is a real job where you are paid to work alongside experienced staff to gain job-specific skills. Apprentices receive training to work towards a nationally recognised qualification. Training is usually undertaken on a day release basis
It can take between one and 6 years to complete an apprenticeship depending on which one you choose, what level it is and your previous experience. It’s funded from contributions made by the government and your employer and anyone living in England, over 16 years-old and not in full-time education can apply.
By the end of an apprenticeship, you'll have the right skills and knowledge needed for your chosen career.
If you are not quite ready for a full Apprenticeship, Traineeships are an option if you want to work but need extra help to gain an apprenticeship or job. Traineeships will give you the opportunity to develop the skills and workplace experience that employers require.
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 employment for most of your time as most training takes place on the job and it will be for at least 30 hours a week.
Your training usually takes place at a local college or a specialist training organisation. Your training is completed off-the-job and the amount of time you spend training and when varies according to your Apprenticeship. It could be anything from one day every other fortnight to two days every week. Everything you study will be useful in your job and help you succeed in your future career.
All apprentices must receive the appropriate National Minimum Wage. The rate per hour depends on your age and whether you’re an Apprentice and are are usually updated every April.
From April 2020 the current National Minimum Wage rate for an Apprentice aged 16 - 18 is £4.15
For the latest information go to the Government website
Types of Apprenticeship and Levels
There are over 150,000 employers offering apprenticeships in more than 200,000 locations, covering more than 170 industries and 1,500 job roles. Specific examples include:
- Animal care.
- Teaching assistant.
- Healthcare support worker.
- Dental nurse.
- Pharmacy technician.
- Cabin crew.
- Travel services.
- Design assistant.
- Hair and beauty.
There are three types of apprenticeship you can apply for depending on your current skills and qualifications. These are:
- Intermediate Level (requires at least 2 Grade 4 at GCSE)
- Advanced Level (requires at least 5 Grade 4 at GCSE)
- Higher and Degree (requires at least 2 A-levels or equivalent)
Higher Apprenticeships provide an opportunity to gain a higher education qualification, such as an NVQ Level 4, HND or foundation degree. They can take from one to five years to complete, and involve part-time study at a college, university or training provider.
Degree Apprenticeships have been developed by businesses, universities and colleges. Apprentices will split their time between university study and the workplace and will be employed throughout – gaining a full bachelor’s or master’s degree from a top university while earning a wage and getting real on-the-job experience in their chosen profession.
Entry requirements vary. An apprenticeship is like a job and students need to demonstrate a strong interest in their chosen apprenticeship area and be ready to start a job. You need to check the apprenticeship vacancies for the specific entry requirements. For example, some may want 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 4-9, others may ask for a Level 2 qualification in English and maths (such as GCSEs at 4-9 or a Level 2 Award in Functional Skills). Some may ask you to take a numeracy and literacy test before you are accepted onto the Apprenticeship.
How to apply
Visit the Find an Apprenticeship section of the government website https://www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship Here you will be able to look at what is being advertised locally, set up an account and receive alerts when new opportunities are advertised and you can also apply for opportunities you are interested in via this website. You can find Traineeships on this website too.
Visit the websites of local Colleges as many will advertise Apprenticeships too.
Remember opportunities are advertised throughout the year, so if you don't see anything you are interested in at the moment, keep checking. Also, keep your options open - you can apply for up to 10 Apprenticeships at a time, so if you see something interesting, apply
Everything you need to know about UK apprenticeships
What is an apprenticeship?
Help and support
Speak to Mrs Stevenson if you need further help or support with Apprenticeships.