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What is an Apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships offer a mixture of on and off-the-job training that gives you the skills needed to progress in your chosen career. An apprenticeship is a real job and you must have a contract of employment. You should work for at least 30 hours per week (if you work fewer than 30 hours a week your time on programme must be extended  on a pro rata basis to take account of this) and will be paid for the hours you work as well as those when you are studying.  You will get at least 20 days paid holiday per year, plus bank holidays.

Some apprentices may already be in employment and they will be given the opportunity to gain formal qualifications relevant to their career.

In 2016 a report jointly released by Barclays and the Centre for Economics and Business Research found that the amount apprentices earn over the course of their lives is outstripping graduates by up to 270%.

How Long Will It Take?

There is no set time to complete an apprenticeship as they vary widely in content and size but all apprenticeships must be at least 12 months long.  Depending on the occupational area you are studying, the requirements of your employer, your own individual input and the range of experience you get the programme could be between one and four years.

How Much Will I Be Paid?

The minimum wage for an apprentice is set by government and reviewed annually.  The current minimum wage for apprentices can be found under /apprenticeships-guide/pay-and-conditions.  This rate applies to apprentices under 19 and those aged 19 or over who are in their first year. You must be paid at least the minimum wage rate for your age if you’re an apprentice aged 19 or over and have completed your first year; some employers choose to pay apprentices at a higher rate. If you are already in employment you will usually remain on your current wage.

Please see County Training's website for a full list of Apprenticeships available.