A commonly asked question in the world of professional development and education is, "Can I do an apprenticeship if I already have a degree?" The answer is a resounding yes! Let's dive deeper into this topic to understand why this is a viable option and how it can enhance your career prospects.
Broadening Horizons with Apprenticeships
Universities and colleges traditionally offer a fantastic educational experience, but the world of work requires a blend of practical experience and academic knowledge. Here's where apprenticeships come in. They offer the opportunity to learn while working, allowing you to apply academic knowledge in real-world situations. This makes apprenticeships an appealing option, regardless of whether you already hold a degree.
Reasons to Consider an Apprenticeship even if you already have a Degree
1. Gain Industry-Specific Skills: You may have a degree, but do you have the necessary skills for your chosen industry? An apprenticeship allows you to acquire industry-specific skills, which can give you a competitive edge.
2. Career Change: People often graduate and then realise that they want to pursue a different career path. An apprenticeship can be the perfect route to facilitate this career change, enabling you to gain practical experience in a new industry.
3. Continuous Learning: An apprenticeship allows you to continuously learn and adapt. In a rapidly changing job market, staying up-to-date and acquiring new skills is essential.
4. Earn While You Learn: Unlike traditional education where you typically pay to learn, apprenticeships pay you! They offer a salary while you work towards a qualification, providing a unique financial advantage.
Understanding Degree Apprenticeships
Even if you already hold a degree, you might want to consider a Degree Apprenticeship. These are Levels 6 and 7 apprenticeships, equivalent to a Bachelor's and Master's degree respectively. They offer an opportunity to delve deeper into your chosen field while gaining invaluable work experience.
Eligibility for Apprenticeships with a Degree
Having a degree doesn't necessarily bar you from apprenticeships, but it might affect funding. In the UK, for example, if you have a degree and are considering an apprenticeship in the same field, government funding might not be available.
However, this doesn't mean you can't do an apprenticeship; it simply means the funding mechanism might be different. Many employers value the skills and knowledge a degree holder brings and may be willing to fund your apprenticeship, especially if it aligns with the company's needs and goals.
Usually you would complete a 'Skills Scan' during the apprenticeship enrolment process. This is an assessment of how competent you may be or not be with the skills and knowledge that form the apprenticeship you're choosing to do. If you match too highly on the skills scan it may mean you're not eligible for the apprenticeship due to overlap from existing knowledge you may have learnt during your degree, or if you are still eligible it may mean the funding band is reduced.
From an employer's perspective, degree holders bring a unique perspective and breadth of knowledge. As such, hiring an apprentice with a degree can enhance the diversity and depth of a team's skills. Employers can also benefit from funding opportunities available for hiring apprentices, making it a win-win situation.
In conclusion, holding a degree should not dissuade you from considering an apprenticeship. Whether you're looking for a career change, seeking practical experience, or aiming to deepen your knowledge, an apprenticeship could be the perfect fit. It's all about finding the right apprenticeship for you – one that complements your degree and aligns with your career goals.
Remember, education is a lifelong journey, and there's no one-size-fits-all approach. Your path might involve a degree, an apprenticeship, or a combination of both. It's your journey, so explore all options and choose the path that suits you best. Embrace the opportunity to learn, grow, and succeed!