Apprenticeships are sometimes looked down upon as it's not the ‘traditional, university approach’. Parents see university as a necessity to gain a good job later in life; with ever-changing dynamics in the world of education, business and politics, getting into 'good' jobs has changed completely. No longer do you need a degree with the highest honours, now you need originality and initiative, giving the company something fresh. Apprenticeships allow young people to develop skills that are transferable and give them the ability to gain experience which employers view favourably.

'Apprenticeships are just for people that don't have the qualifications to go to university'

This couldn't be further from the truth. A growing percentage of young people are choosing apprenticeships over the traditional university route. The development of degree apprenticeships has led to another ‘string-to-the-bow’ of apprenticeships. A degree apprenticeship (as you may have guessed!) combines both an apprenticeship and a university-approved degree. The apprentice will go to university part-time and gain a degree as any other university student would… whilst completing the apprenticeship, getting paid and not having to pay tuition fees. Winning!
Employers are also valuing experience over qualifications which allows apprentices to have a head-start over university graduates without any work experience.

'Apprenticeships don't lead to anything'

This is one, if not the, most common views on apprenticeships. However, it is completely false and in fact, the opposite of the case. As stated above, employers are increasingly regarding experience as a greater priority over qualifications. A completion of an apprenticeship often leads to the employer offering a full-time role in their company. It has also lead to post-apprentices being offered prestigious jobs due to their experience and time with the company. There are also employers that specifically look to hire those who have completed apprenticeships, most of them being big companies such as Deloitte and Lloyds.

'Apprenticeships are only good for manual jobs'

Although apprenticeships are widely available in manual jobs such as building, electricians etc. they are one of many genres that provide extensive apprenticeships. For example, on the Not Going To Uni website, there are 112 different genres to choose from. These range from law apprenticeships to software development, varying in diversity across the board. For young people to gain experience in these sectors gives them vast opportunities to progress and develop their careers.

'You get given all the work no-one else wants to do if you're an apprentice'

This is also not true. Although you are expected to do jobs that aren't considered glamorous, anyone who is new to a company/job will go through this, apprentice or not. An apprenticeship is all about learning and developing the apprentice in order to allow them to breach the skills gap and progress their careers. Whilst gaining experience and qualifications the apprentice will also develop as a person and this is part of the process. To a company, having an employee that has completed an apprenticeship with them is invaluable.

Myths – Busted

Apprenticeships are vital for both small and large companies, no matter the industry. Apprenticeship figures are rising and employers have a much better outlook upon taking on apprentices, especially with the release of the 2018 Apprenticeship Levy. 96% of companies who had hired apprentices have said they will hire increasingly more over the next 2 years.

With the turning age of digitalisation and the progression of relationships in the workplace between employer, employees and clients. Apprentices bridge this growing divide well due to their knowledge of the digital world and varying views on problem solving. With the advances in technology, it can leave the older generations in work unaware of the opportunities that technology brings. Apprentices, having grown up around these tools can utilise them to their full potential. Many companies and business are realising this as they continue to develop their technological education internally as well as bringing in apprentices to allow for different approaches.

If you are interested in an apprenticeship, visit

Written by Lewis Scott