Apprenticeships or University - Which should you choose?

The decision to continue our education beyond high school or college is one of the most difficult, perplexing, and essential decisions we make in our early adulthood.

From our experience in school and college, there isn't a lot of guidance for straying from the conventional school, college, and university path. 

We held a poll to find out what people thought, and the vast majority of individuals said they didn't get any advice regarding choosing paid employment or an apprenticeship as an alternative to university.

One user commented:

“When I left school, the careers adviser tried to push me into uni but I knew it deffo wasn’t for me. I’m so glad I fought the norm and went for an apprenticeship cos I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t! It’s a shame so many young people think that uni is the only way to make a career for themselves!”

The general consensus is that not enough guidance was provided by institutions to demonstrate that apprenticeships & paid work are in fact good alternatives to University. Apprenticeships, in particular, ARE viable alternatives to University, and we will explain why further in this post.

Benefits of an Apprenticeship

Obviously, no debt!

University costs are immense. You could be in £27,000 (or more) worth of debt in the space of three years of study. The end result is a qualification that will hopefully get you a high paying job, in which you will resume the repayment of your University debt anyway! Apprenticeships are free, there’s no debt! In fact, you’ll be earning on the job, and gaining qualifications at the same time...

Get paid for learning on the job, and receive qualifications by the end.

Apprenticeships offer the unique opportunity to be paid for your time (minimum of 30 hrs per week), whilst studying your sector and gaining valuable experience and qualifications at the same time.

Experience sells a candidate in today’s job climate, we hosted a poll to ask the public this question: What’s more important, experience or qualifications?

In our poll, 94% of people voted that experience was more important than qualifications when they were hiring for a position. This means that apprenticeships are hands down more beneficial than University.

In addition, a digital marketing apprenticeship, for example, lasts 15-18 months and is fully paid, with potential career advancement opportunities. A standard university degree takes three years, is unpaid, and you emerge unemployed. In these three years, an apprentice candidate could have been fully employed, or they could have worked their way up to a higher position in the company, and in either case, they’d have been paid for their time, they’d have beneficial qualifications, and most importantly, they’d have gained experience that looks good on a CV, which as we’ve shown, will make them more employable.

An easy entry into an industry you’d like to work in. 

Fed up of job roles you desire requiring years of experience that you simply don’t have? And you can’t get the experience because event entry-level positions require experience?! Apprenticeships are the solution, with our digital marketing apprenticeships, all you need is 5 GCSE’s A*-C, and a KEEN INTEREST in working in the sector to be viable for the role!


Social Life

Granted, University social life is more active and more involved, a lot of workplaces will still celebrate the holidays with nights out and office parties. So you're all covered!

If you're interested in learning more about Apprentices, browse our website.

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1st November

Career Advice Company news Blog