What is an apprenticeship?

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What is an apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship is a mix of work and training.

 As an apprentice, you’ll have a job with an employer where you’ll work as a member of their team and be trained to do a specific role by your colleagues or supervisor.

As part of your apprenticeship programme you’ll spend time at Gateshead College where you’ll receive up to date training that is relevant to your job. You’ll come away not only with a fantastic set of skills and work experience but with a nationally recognised qualification that is valued by employers. 

Usually the qualification you’ll receive will be a technical certificate and an NVQ. There are three different levels of apprenticeship training, if your employer agrees you could progress up to Level 3 Higher Apprenticeship which is the same as a Foundation Degree.

When you finish your apprenticeship you’ll have a fantastic set of skills and hands-on work experience to put on your CV. Many apprentices are promoted and go on to successfully climb the career ladder.

Frequently asked Questions

Got a question? Then we will have the answers.

Are there different levels of apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships take between one and five years to complete and cover 1500 job roles in a wide range of industries, from engineering to accountancy, marketing to hairdressing. Apprenticeships are now available up to degree level. The different levels are:

Level 2 Apprenticeship – This is the same as GCSE’s

Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship – This is the same as A Levels

Level 4 Higher Apprenticeship – This is the same as a Foundation Degree

Do I get a qualification?

Yes. You will receive a qualification that is valued by employers and is recognised both nationally and internationally. Usually, the qualifications you’ll receive will be a Technical Certificate and an NVQ.

What level will I start at?

As a school leaver, you can start on a Level 2 or Level 3 apprenticeship, depending on your exam results, experience and the type of candidate the employer is looking for.

What will I get paid?

The average salary is £170 per week. Some employers will pay more than this, some will pay less, but no less than a set national minimum wage. The salary will be advertised with the apprenticeship.

Will I get any holidays?

Yes. You will be entitled to a minimum of 20 days holiday, plus 8 statutory days such as Bank Holidays.

What are the entry qualification requirements?

For most apprenticeship positions, you need to have four GCSEs at Grades C or above, including maths and English or a GNVQ in a related subject. However, a positive attitude and previous work experience may also be taken into account.

I don’t have any qualifications; can I still do an apprenticeship?

At Gateshead College we offer a range of introductory training courses and pre-apprenticeships which are designed to give you the skills you need to progress onto an apprenticeship. For full course information, why not visit our website?

How much time to I spend at Gateshead College?

This will depend on the type of apprenticeship you do. For some apprenticeships, you’ll spend four days in work and one day at Gateshead College. For others, you might spend several weeks in work, then spend a week at college.

How long will I be an apprentice?

It depends upon the type of apprenticeship and can vary from 12 months to four years.

What can I do after an apprenticeship?

With a CV bursting with work experience and ‘job ready’ skills, you’ll be ideally placed to secure a job in your chosen field following an apprenticeship. The majority of apprentices stay in employment with two thirds staying with their apprentice employer.

Or you can progress onto a foundation degree or HND, many of which can be studied part time so you can continue to work.

Can I still go to University?

Yes. Some apprenticeships attract UCAS points or lead to foundation degrees and HNDs which enable you to progress to a full honours degree programme at University.

Got more questions? Book an appointment with our Apprenticeship Advisor.