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Apprenticeships After GCSE: Earning While Learning

As GCSE Results Day (Thursday, August 24, 2023) approaches, students across the UK find themselves considering their next steps. One option that combines practical skill development with continued learning is an apprenticeship. Check out our blog post below discussing the benefits of an apprenticeship, data and insights into apprenticeships, how to get started with finding an apprenticeship, as well as our free courses and useful links to help you.

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Apprenticeships After GCSEs:

Choosing an apprenticeship after GCSEs provides a pathway full of potential, blending practical on-the-job training with structured study. This practical approach empowers you to step into the world of work while continuing your educational journey.

But what does undertaking an apprenticeship after GCSEs really entail?

Primarily, it signifies the start of your chosen career at an earlier stage compared to peers pursuing traditional academic routes. Instead of focusing solely on classroom studies, you're immersed in your industry of choice, gaining hands-on experience, understanding the job's nitty-gritty, and developing a wealth of transferable skills.

Apprenticeships span an extensive range of fields, extending beyond traditional trades to sectors as diverse as property maintenance, healthcare, IT, hospitality, construction, and retail. Each apprenticeship is specially crafted to give apprentices a holistic understanding of their job role while contributing to their professional growth.

For instance, a property maintenance apprenticeship would place you in a practical setting—perhaps a real estate agency or a property management firm—where you would learn directly from seasoned professionals. Here, you would understand the ins and outs of maintaining properties, ensuring they're safe and comfortable for inhabitants and potentially even gaining specialist knowledge in areas like plumbing, electrics, or carpentry.

Meanwhile, a business administration apprenticeship could find you in a dynamic corporate environment or a small business, where you would learn to navigate administrative tasks, master organisational skills, and become adept at handling business communications.

The beauty of apprenticeships lies in their adaptability. They aren't one-size-fits-all; instead, they're tailored to the specific career path you wish to embark upon, offering you a valuable head-start on your journey. Apprenticeships are about earning and learning in tandem, growing professionally while also achieving academic qualifications.

Options Available:

There are hundreds of apprenticeships to choose from, each with a unique focus. Some popular choices for students post-GCSE include:

  • Business Administration

  • Childcare

  • IT and Digital Marketing

  • Engineering

  • Health and Social Care

  • Construction

Benefits of an Apprenticeship compared to College or Sixth Form:

Earn While You Learn: Apprenticeships are designed to let you earn a wage while gaining valuable qualifications. This means you're financially independent much sooner and can save or even invest for the future while still learning.

Practical Experience: With apprenticeships, you’re in the thick of real-world industry practice. This hands-on experience makes you highly desirable to future employers. It also helps you understand your industry much more comprehensively, enhancing your problem-solving skills and ability to adapt to professional environments.

No Tuition Fees: Unlike traditional education pathways that can leave you with substantial student debt, apprenticeships are funded by employers and the government. This financial freedom lets you focus on your development instead of worrying about repaying loans.

Tailored Learning: Apprenticeships are designed with the learner's needs in mind. You receive one-on-one mentoring and have access to support and guidance throughout your apprenticeship. This personalised learning approach helps you build on your strengths and address your development areas effectively.

Network Building: Apprenticeships provide an excellent platform to meet industry professionals, helping you build a network that could prove invaluable for your future career. The relationships you forge during this time might lead to job opportunities, collaborations, or simply provide you with mentors who can guide you throughout your professional journey.

Holistic Skill Development: Besides technical skills, apprenticeships also help you develop soft skills like communication, teamwork, time management, and initiative. These are highly sought-after by employers across industries and are crucial for your long-term career growth.

Progression Opportunities: Many apprentices are offered full-time roles at the end of their apprenticeships, making it a direct path to employment. Moreover, the qualifications you gain during your apprenticeship can serve as stepping stones to higher education or advanced roles in your industry.

In contrast to traditional college or sixth-form education, apprenticeships provide a more interactive and industry-oriented learning experience. They offer an excellent route for those eager to step into their professional lives without delaying or bypassing their education.

Apprenticeship Levels After GCSEs:

After completing your GCSEs, you're eligible to start an Intermediate Apprenticeship (Level 2) or an Advanced Apprenticeship (Level 3). These are equivalent to GCSEs and A levels respectively, but come with the added benefit of work experience.

The Cost of Doing an Apprenticeship:

The best part about apprenticeships? They're free for the apprentice. The cost of training is covered by your employer and the government. Plus, you earn a wage during your apprenticeship.

What does the Data say?

According to the Department for Education, 90% of apprentices stay in employment after completing their apprenticeship (includes 2% self-employed), and 71% of them continue working with the same employer. Furthermore, a survey by the National Apprenticeship Service found that 89% of apprentices are satisfied with their apprenticeship, and 97% of apprentices said their ability to do the job had improved.

Getting Started With Your Apprenticeship:

Embarking on an apprenticeship after GCSEs may seem like a daunting task, but with the right resources and guidance, it can be a smooth and rewarding process. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to get started:

Identify Your Interests: Start by understanding your areas of interest and potential career paths. Do you enjoy hands-on tasks, or do you prefer a business environment? Identifying your preferences will help you choose the right apprenticeship.

Research Your Options: With numerous apprenticeships available across a wide range of sectors, you'll want to familiarise yourself with the options. The government's 'Find an Apprenticeship' website is an excellent resource, providing detailed information on different apprenticeships, including entry requirements and course content.

Apprenticeships with GLP Training: At GLP Training, we offer a variety of apprenticeships across sectors. With a team of industry professionals and experienced trainers, we ensure that you receive quality training and full support throughout your apprenticeship journey. Our apprenticeships are designed to equip you with the skills and knowledge needed to excel in your chosen field.

Look on Job Search Sites: Websites like Indeed are fantastic tools to find apprenticeship opportunities. These sites not only list numerous apprenticeships but also provide user-friendly filters that allow you to search by location, sector, or level of apprenticeship.

Apply: Once you've found an apprenticeship that interests you, the next step is to apply. This usually involves submitting a CV and cover letter, and potentially attending an interview or assessment day. Take this opportunity to showcase your enthusiasm and any relevant skills or experience.

Remember, choosing an apprenticeship is a significant step in shaping your career. Take the time to explore your options, seek advice, and make an informed decision. The right apprenticeship can set you on the path to a fulfilling and successful career.

You can complete our free interview techniques course here to help give you a head start!

An apprenticeship after your GCSEs provides a unique blend of education and real-world experience, shaping your career from an early stage. As you consider your options post-GCSE Results Day, remember that the path to success is not linear. An apprenticeship could be your ticket to a rewarding, debt-free career.

Stay tuned to our blog for more insights on apprenticeships and the doors they can open for your future. GLP Training is dedicated to providing quality apprenticeships that set you on the path to career success.

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