January 21, 2020

We bust the myths around apprenticeships

Apprenticeships can help people of all ages gain career-ready skills while earning a wage. But let’s be honest, they haven’t always been fully understood.

However, research shows that attitudes are changing, with 77% of young people now believing that apprenticeships offer good career prospects. A study from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) even suggests that over half of UK parents believe that apprenticeships are better than university when it comes to getting a good job.

Given this shift in opinion, we’re here to bust some of the outdated myths that persist around apprenticeships.

Myth: apprenticeships are just for plumbers and hairdressers

While an apprenticeship is a great way to become a plumber or a hairdresser, these are far from the only careers on offer. You might be surprised at the range of apprenticeship roles – over 1,500 occupations across 170 industries are available, including software engineering, digital marketing and laboratory science.

And apprenticeships are available at all levels – ranging from the equivalent of GCSE level through to a masters degree.

Myth: I’m too old to be an apprentice

Not true! Apprenticeships are relevant for anyone over the age of 16 and not in full-time education. There’s no upper age limit and the proportion of ‘mature’ people (that is, over 24 years old) starting apprenticeships is increasing.

In fact, if you’re aged 24 or above, you may be eligible for adult skills funding if you undertake an advanced-level apprenticeship or higher apprenticeship. So it turns out you can teach an old dog new tricks!

Myth: apprenticeships aren’t as good as university

Apprenticeships are no better or worse than university, they’re just a different way of getting skills and experience in your chosen career.  An apprenticeship can also offer lots of benefits that university programmes often don’t – like putting theory into practice, and developing understanding of the world of work from day one.

Apprentices can even gain a qualification that’s equivalent to a degree – a degree apprenticeship. And the best bit? You don’t need to pay tens of thousands in tuition fees – they’re totally free!

Myth: apprentices don’t earn very much

Studying for an apprenticeship can significantly boost your wage. According to the National Apprenticeship Service, an advanced apprenticeship can enhance your lifetime earnings by between £77,000 and £117,000. And if you go on to study for a higher or degree-level apprenticeship this can rise to £150,000. And that’s not even counting the £27,750 you’ll save in tuition fees compared with a three-year university course in England.

Hopefully that helped to bust some myths. And with four in five organisations in England either employing apprentices currently or planning to in the future, the future for apprenticeships looks bright.

And last but not least – don’t forget to register with us.

Once you’ve registered your details on BASE’s Talent Pool, we can connect you all the latest jobs from our outstanding employers.