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Information and advice for young people in Suffolk

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What is an apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship is an alternative option to full time college, sixth form or university, you will work a 'REAL' full time job and study for your qualification at the same time, with it usually being a day release to a college, an assessor coming to your workplace to access you there or sometimes even through e-learning. You will also be paid a wage for the job you are doing and this can depend on the type of apprenticeship and employer you have chosen. 

What level of apprenticeship can I do?

There are many levels of apprenticeships, please see below table: 

Apprenticeship Type


Equivalent educational level



5 GCSE’s A*-C  or grades 9-4



2 A-Level Passes


4, 5

Higher education certificate/ Diploma or a foundation degree





Bachelor’s degree


Master’s degree

How long is an apprenticeship for?

Usually an apprenticeship can be from 1 - 5 years depending on the level and employer chosen, when searching for an apprenticeship you can check the duration of the apprenticeship. 

How do you apply for an apprenticeship? 

You can search and apply for live vacancies by going on to Sign up and search through local apprenticeship vacancies, you can narrow your search by typing in your location and how many miles you are willing to travel, this will then generate a list of vacancies that are ready for applications. 

How much do you get paid?

The national minimum apprenticeship wage is £3.90 (April 2019) per hour but many employers pay more. 

What are the benefits of completing an apprenticeship?

 The benefits of completing an apprenticeship are: 

  • Earning a wage whilst you are learning
  • Research shows that apprentice's can earn more in their lifetime that others who choose not to complete an apprenticeship 
  • Relevant and practical experience 
  • You can gain a degree or equivalent qualification with a higher apprenticeship 
  • If you complete a higher or degree apprenticeship you are left with no university debt as most employers may for your training. 
  • Recognition and status 

Can anyone do an apprenticeship?

 To complete an apprenticeship you have to be 16 years old, live in England. You can complete an apprenticeship up to the age of 65!

Will completing an apprenticeship affect my benefits?

 Completing an apprenticeship may effect some benefits, to find out if they will effect yours then please go to your local job centre. 

What sort of apprenticeship can I do?

Apprenticeships come in a range of different sectors from engineering, business, hairdressing and childcare just to name a few. The list of different apprenticeship you can do (they are called standards) are listed on the Institute for Apprenticeships website.

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