Secondary: Apprenticeships

What are Apprenticeships?

Apprenticeships are an excellent way for young people to gain qualifications and workplace experience whilst at the same time earning a wage.

All apprenticeships are real jobs so all apprentices earn a salary. You must be paid at least the national minimum apprenticeship wage – and many employers pay significantly more. Apprentices will also receive training that will provide them with the knowledge and skills required for the job. Apprentices should work for at least 30 hours per week and an apprenticeship takes between one and five years* to complete, depending upon the level of apprenticeship and the industry sector.

Most of the training is delivered in the workplace, so you will learn the skills you need to do the job well. The rest of the training is given by a training organisation, either at the workplace, off-site (perhaps at college) or via e-learning. The training is specifically tailored to ensure you develop the skills the employer wants, giving apprentices a real advantage in the workplace. This means that apprentices not only have better long term salary prospects, but they also have excellent progression opportunities, whether looking to study further or climb the ranks within the workplace.

Apprenticeship Levels

  • There are three levels of Apprenticeships;
  • Intermediate Level Apprenticeship – (level 2)
  • Advanced Level Apprenticeship – (level 3)
  • Higher and Degree Apprenticeship – (level 4,5,6,and 7)

Higher and Degree Apprenticeships

Higher and Degree Apprenticeships can be an excellent alternative for A-Level school leavers, who might want to choose a different route to traditional university study. There are currently 75 higher and degree apprenticeships available (with more in development) including foundation degrees, HNDs and full honours degrees. These include job roles ranging from legal services to banking and engineering, giving young people the chance to continue their professional development and realise their full potential.

  •  Those completing a higher apprenticeship could see increased earning of an estimated £150,000 over their lifetime*
  • Employers think that qualified higher apprentices are 25% more employable than those that took another route into work*
  • On completion 90% of apprentices stay in employment with 71% staying with the same employer. A quarter receive a promotion within 12 months.

* ICM Research

Types of Apprenticeship

Apprenticeships are available in all sectors and industries throughout England. There are more than 250 different types of Apprenticeships available offering 1,500 job roles in a wide range of sectors.

Apprentice Volunteers available to speak through Inspiring the Future

Inspiring the Future already over 6,000 of its 38,000 volunteers that are best placed to speak about Apprenticeships to young people across a range of sectors. Simply select Yes to the ‘Can Talk About Apprenticeships:’ question when searching for volunteers to see Apprentice volunteers available in your area. You can also choose to search the capacity in which the volunteers can speak about Apprenticeships.

Schools and colleges are able to access these volunteers for free and invite them to speak to their students about their job, career, the education route that they took, and their own personal experience of / undertaking an apprenticeship and or how to access their profession through the Apprenticeship entry route. In addition Inspiring the Future work with other agencies, including the National Apprenticeship Service and the Skills Funding Agency, to support teachers in hosting apprenticeship speakers and in the delivery of apprenticeships insight and guidance. If you would like to speak to the team about support to organise an Apprenticeship session with an Inspiring the Future volunteer, please email 

Have a look at the videos below kindly supplied by our partner that could stimulate discussions before a volunteer through Inspiring the Future visits your school or college:

Apprentice – Auto Windscreens

Apprentice Project Manager – BT

Engineering Apprentice – MBDA

Materials and Process Engineering Apprentice – MBDA

Find out more:

Visit Find An Apprenticeship to see current apprenticeship opportunities in your area:

Visit the Amazing Apprenticeships site to access lots of free resources to help raise awareness of apprenticeships