Myths or Facts

Apprenticeship Myths

What's the truth?

Below are six common Apprenticeship myths.

An Apprenticeship is not a real job

This simply isn’t true.  Apprenticeships are paid jobs with training. You’ll be treated just like any other employee, with the same rights and responsibilities, and will undertake work that is important to the business.  The main difference will be that you’ll receive training and learn about an industry while you are working in it.  You’ll develop the skills and knowledge needed for your role, all while being employed and earning a wage.

Apprenticeships are for people with poor grades or who can’t get into university

This is not the case.  Apprenticeships are for those who are keen to join the world of work. Those choosing an Apprenticeship are ambitious, career focused and keen to learn and earn at the same time.  Many students who were academic in school or college decide not to apply for college or university as they’d rather spend their time learning while working and earning.

In order to have a good career, I have to go to university

Again this is simply not true. Apprenticeships open up a variety of doors and can take you all the way to the top of your chosen career.  Apprenticeships are widely recognised by employers and you can progress to study qualifications at degree and master’s level through an Apprenticeship.  You won’t have any student debt, you’ll start earning immediately and gain real work skills and experience.

I won’t be able to afford an Apprenticeship / I won’t be paid

Apprenticeships won’t cost you a penny and you’ll earn a salary while you learn.  This is because they are paid for by the Government or your employer, so there are no student fees.  In the UK, the national minimum wage for all 16 to 18 year olds apprentices and apprentices aged over 19 in the first year of their Apprenticeship is also £3.40 per hour (correct at October 2016). According to the National Apprenticeship Service however, the average salary for an apprentice is around £170 per week, with recent research by the ONS (2016) showing that many apprentices are ahead of graduates when it comes to earnings. Don’t forget, it’s not all about the money; employers are investing time and support in your training and development, and that’s worth thousands!

Graduates earn more than Apprentices

There is a common belief that a university education will allow you to earn more than an Apprenticeship. Yes, some graduates go on to earn good wages, but so do many apprentices, and all without the burden of tuition fee loans and living cost debt. Many university students also struggle to find appropriate work once they graduate, whereas apprentices are already ahead on the career ladder as they are employed, have real work skills, experience and training.

Apprentices stay in the same career for life

Many people change careers during their working lives and this can also be true for apprentices. Apprenticeships prepare you for a particular career, but as they develop a range of transferable skills you can easily use the skills you develop in other areas, so there’s no need to feel you are tied to a particular career forever.

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