Degrees were once considered to be the best way to land a successful career, however apprenticeships allow you to earn and learn which also open doors to prosperous jobs. Both further education routes have their pros and cons, but which is right for you?
The cost of university is something to seriously consider as the average student leaves with around £50,000 of debt, apprentices on the other hand are exempt from tuition fees. Financially, apprenticeships are more favourable for the immediate reward of earning right away but it’s not the only thing to consider!
An apprentice will become a master of their craft and pick up a lot of specific skills that will allow them to excel in a particular field (such as engineering). A graduate, on the other hand, will have acquired transferable skills such as organisational and analytical skills which can be used in any job. The downside to this is that graduates can struggle to find a role in the short term because they lack practical experience – something which apprentices will have gained once their training has finished.
Courses on offer
There are thousands of courses to choose from at university, from nanotechnology to game design, but they often can be incredibly competitive. Alternatively, apprenticeships offer a smaller list of training schemes but it’s more likely there is a natural progression into the world of work.
Graduates should consider graduate schemes to get a foot in the door or seek internships to help develop career goals. The tricky part for those who have completed an apprenticeship is that it can be more difficult to change industries later down the line and depending on the industry, additional training may be needed.
We recommend researching in depth before making a decision and considering whether your degree will warrant the cost of a tuition fee or whether as an apprentice, you already know the industry you want to dedicate yourself to.