What is an Apprenticeship?
Many high school students are expected to know which subjects they want to choose to study towards their future career path. However, very few students at this point in their lives, know what career path they would like to follow, and therefore what subjects to choose. An apprenticeship is a unique way for a student in high school (and also university), to gain practical experience in different careers or workplaces, with a view to helping them make informed choices regarding their future potential career. An apprenticeship involves a student being exposed to and trained at a place of work in a field in which they are interested. Often this environment will include having a mentor or supervisor to help guide them through daily activities. In some cases, the student may even be paid!
Why an Apprenticeship?
In an apprenticeship environment, a student can gain valuable, first-hand experience and exposure to different potential career paths, as well as network in a career path they think they will want to follow. It can teach students invaluable lessons about what it is like to work in said environment, be it an office, a hospital, or even outdoors! It allows bridges to be built, which could lead to future opportunities for young people entering the workforce for the first time. All of the above allows a student to gain a competitive edge over others wanting to enter the same job market, but who have not been apprenticed; whilst at the same time, helping ease their eventual transition into the working environment.
Advantages of an Apprenticeship
An apprenticeship is considered to be a job, as well as a learning opportunity. A student can pursue an education while also being trained for a specific career path.
It may also provide a direct path for employment after training is complete; and thus allow for a sense of job safety and the promise of a successful career start.
Completing the training involved could allow a student to earn higher wages, as they have more training and a better education than their peers who may not have completed an apprenticeship.
For many students, paying for their education now, to only find work at a later point, is difficult, and in many cases may require a student to take out a student loan and incur substantial debt. An apprenticeship can help a student embark on their studies while being paid at the same time, thereby easing the burden of expensive tuition fees. In some cases, universities may even favour a student who holds an apprenticeship over others who don’t, as it shows that they are serious about their chosen career path. For students who do not wish to attend university and instead want to enter the workforce as soon as possible, an apprenticeship is an ideal vehicle for gaining experience and the skills necessary for them to easily enter at a higher paying level.
Apprenticeships are proven to offer substantial benefits and development opportunities to students. They have helped students worldwide find out what is their real passion in life, and in turn, follow through with their ideal work situation. They emphasise the importance of gaining real-life work experience along with key skills; and together, these will help students enter the work force with not only a better education, but also much better prepared for the real world.