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About apprenticeships

Anyone from 16 to 116 can start an apprenticeship.

There are many benefits to choosing an apprenticeship. It is a good way to get into work and gain a qualification at the same time. You will also earn money while you are learning so you can avoid getting into university debt.

Apprenticeships are available in lots of different sectors, from agriculture and construction to law, engineering or media.

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Levels of apprenticeship

There are four different levels of apprenticeship.

  • Level 2 Intermediate - equivalent to five good GCSE passes.
  • Level 3 Advanced - equivalent to two A-level passes.
  • Level 4 Higher - equivalent to the first stages of higher education, such as a foundation degree.
  • Level 5/7 Degree - comparable to a Bachelor's or Master's degree.

Pay for apprentices

There are different rates of pay for apprentices depending on your age and what year of your apprenticeship you’re in. 

In the first year of your apprenticeship, you will receive at least £4.30 per hour. If you are older than 19 this will go up to the national minimum wage from your second year. Many apprenticeships will pay more than the minimum.

You will also be entitled to sick pay, any additional benefits your employer offers to its other employees, such as healthcare plans and childcare vouchers, and at least 20 days of paid holiday a year.

Apprenticeship case studies

If you still need convincing that apprenticeships could be worth considering then read our case studies below:

Read more about the experience of apprentices on the Not going to Uni website.

Funding for apprentices and businesses taking on apprentices

New trainees and apprentices that meet certain qualifying criteria will get £500 as well as help with the cost of travel, clothing and other training-related costs. This is part of the Wychavon and Malvern Hills Upskilling Project funded by the UK Government's Community Renewal Fund.

Businesses can also get funding to help with the cost of taking on new apprentices and trainees.

Current apprenticeship vacancies

There are plenty of opportunities for Higher and Degree level apprenticeships. View list of vacancies on the amazing apprenticeships website.

Other types of training

Apprenticeships are not the only way you can access training and improve your skills. Some other options are listed below.

Traineeships

Traineeships help get you ready for work or an apprenticeship. A traineeship is 70 hours long and can last from 6 weeks up to 1 year, though most traineeships last for less than 6 months. They can help develop your English, maths and digital skills.

While you won’t get paid for a traineeship, you might be given expenses for travel and food.

A traineeship can give you 70 hours work experience, give you the skills you need to get your apprenticeship, help you with your CV, and give you some feedback from an employer. You will not have an employment contract as it is not a job.

To find out more about traineeships in our area contact Whitehead Ross on 07404 895438 or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Search for other training providers on the Worcestershire Apprenticeships website.

The Kickstart Scheme

The Kickstart Scheme is aimed at 16 to 24-year olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long-term unemployment.

Jobs created by The Kickstart Scheme pay the national minimum wage, are full-time and last for a year. You may leave at any time and you may be taken on full time during the process. You will have an employment contract.

You cannot apply for a Kickstarter post yourself. You must be referred by the Job Centre.

Free qualifications for adults 19 and over

If you are aged 19 and over and do not already have a Level 3 qualification, equivalent to an advanced technical certificate or diploma or A levels, you can study for a free qualification.

Read about qualification levels on GOV.UK

Qualifications are available in the following sectors:

  • accounting and finance
  • agriculture
  • building and construction
  • business management
  • childcare and early years
  • digital
  • engineering
  • environmental conservation
  • health and social care
  • horticulture and forestry
  • manufacturing technologies
  • mathematics and statistics
  • medicine and dentistry
  • public services
  • science
  • teaching and lecturing
  • transportation operations and maintenance
  • warehousing and distribution

Some of these qualifications are available to study online or part-time. In some instances, you may need to meet admissions criteria for the course you chose to apply for. For example, you may need to have studied a particular subject before at a lower level.

To apply you will need to contact the college you wish to study at.