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What is an apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship is a way to learn and earn in a real job, gaining a real qualification while working. The minimum wage for apprentices is currently £4.15 although this goes up annually. While this might seem low at first, apprentices could earn up to £150,000[1] more over their lifetime than those who took other pathways into employment. You will work with an employer four days per week and spend one day training at the College or in your workplace working towards your qualification.

Apprenticeships are available to anyone over 16 who knows what work they want to do but need the skills and experience in the workplace to get there. They are recognised by employers as a mark of high quality and consistent training.

Watch our video below for an example of a successful past apprentice:

What's in it for me?

Apprenticeships have a number of advantages over A-Levels or other vocational routes, including:

What can I do an apprenticeship in?

We offer apprenticeships in the following areas:

  • Barbering
  • Beauty Therapy
  • Brickwork
  • Business Admin
  • Business Improvement Techniques
  • Carpentry & Joinery
  • Catering
  • Chef Scholarship
  • Childcare
  • Customer Services
  • Engineering (@ SWDT)
  • Hairdressing
  • Hospitality
  • Logistic Operations
  • Management
  • Motor Vehicle- Fitting/Maintenance & Repair
  • Nail Services
  • Painting & Decorating
  • Plumbing
  • Social Media and Digital Marketing
  • Supporting Physical Education in Schools
  • Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools
  • Team Leading
  • Warehousing & Storage

Apprentice case studies

Chelsea Apprenticeship

Level 3 Business Administration Apprentice

Chelsea joined Persimmon Homes in 2016 and after completing her Level 3 Apprenticeship in Business Administration she has been promoted to Assistant Buyer at the firm’s Bowburn offices. She is now combining a Level 4 Advanced Apprenticeship with her new role, which sees her purchasing materials for building sites, liaising with suppliers and negotiating prices.

Chelsea said: “The apprenticeship has benefited my personal life in many ways; I have gained a full time role within the company and have since been promoted to Assistant Buyer. This has enabled me to buy a new car and also get onto the property ladder, with the purchase of my first home in October.

“The course has built my confidence because of the knowledge I have gained through studying the qualification. I wouldn’t be at such an advanced stage in my career without the help of the college and the course I have studied. I would definitely recommend this apprenticeship to other young people as it has certainly kick started my adult life in the most positive of ways.”

Lauren apprenticeship

Level 3 Supporting Teaching and Learning Apprentice

Lauren secured her job as a Learning Support Assistant at Bishop Barrington School after completing her Level 3 Apprenticeship in Supporting Teaching and Learning.

She said: “I work with children who have behavioural difficulties or special educational needs, or problems with anxiety and requiring emotional support - both on a one-to-one basis and also sometimes as a group. I’m loving my job, really enjoying it.

“During my apprenticeship I feel I gained key industry knowledge, learning first hand from teaching professionals, and the confidence to do the job. It’s also a great way to earn money while you are learning.”

Thomas Apprenticeship

Level 4 Engineering Apprentice

Thomas is in the third year of an Advanced Apprenticeship (Engineering Design and Draughtsperson) with SWDT, which will give him a Level 4 HNC qualification. His employer is M5tec, a bespoke engineering design solutions company specialising in areas including nuclear, oil and gas, and renewable energies.

Thomas left school unsure as to which Engineering pathway he wanted to go down either the academic or vocational. He said: “I chose a mix of the two, and went and did a two-year BTEC Level 3 in Engineering. When the opportunity of an Apprenticeship as CAD designer came up locally, I took it.

“As M5tec have invested their time in me, and continue to do so, I feel I am an integral part of its ongoing growth.”

Want to find out more?

If you require any more information please contact our apprenticeships team on 01388 436804, email or fill out the form at the link below.

Enquire About Apprenticeships

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