5 Common Misconceptions about Apprenticeships
Apprenticeships are a great way to learn practical skills, earn a wage and gain a recognised qualification that can help you go further in your career. But despite their growing popularity, there are still many myths about apprenticeships that people believe to be true. Here are 5 of the most common misconceptions:
1. 'Apprenticeships are only valuable for manual industries'
While this may have been true in the past, apprenticeships are now available in hundreds of different occupations and industries. You can apply for roles in many different sectors and at a variety of levels, with higher- and degree-level apprenticeships also available. Popular apprenticeships include accounting and finance, digital marketing, project management or even team leading and operational management.
2. 'Apprenticeships are only for people who didn't do well in school'
This certainly isn’t the case. Apprenticeships have become a viable alternative route into employment because university isn’t for everyone. And those who apply for an apprenticeship don't necessarily achieve lower grades at school. Some apprentices simply feel ready to enter the world of work, but see the value in working towards a recognised qualification at the same time. University graduates are also able to apply for apprenticeships as long as the qualification they choose differs from that in which they graduated.
3. 'Apprenticeships are considered lower value than university qualifications'
University degrees remain popular with school leavers, but how many of those students know that many apprenticeship schemes now offer degrees and foundation degrees? With an apprenticeship, you could finish with the same qualification as a university graduate, and you’ll also have the industry experience that comes with it. This is a huge advantage when climbing the career ladder and adds value to your CV. There’s also the added bonus of having no university debt to pay back at the end.
4. 'Apprenticeships only lead to minimum wage jobs'
Apprentices are paid at least the national minimum wage for their age, but in some cases, employers will pay more. Apprentices are also paid for the time they spend off the job for classroom study, as well as the hours they work. According to the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS), higher apprentices earn on average £150,000 more throughout their lifetime compared to others who have level 3 vocational training.
5. 'Apprenticeships won't lead to a full time job'
As an apprentice, you should have an individual employment contract that gives you the same rights as other employees for your length of employment and opportunities for progression within the company. By the end of your apprenticeship, you will have gained an understanding of the business and will be qualified to do the job. If it doesn’t work out, and you’re not offered a permanent position, you have the experience and practical skills to progress your career elsewhere. You will be in prime position to apply for other roles in your chosen industry with the valuable knowledge and skills you’ve gained.
For more information on apprenticeships - or to find out about opportunities in your local area - contact us today.