Apprenticeships for students

Get Ahead Sutton! That’s the message that is being shouted loud and clear across the borough at the moment – because apprenticeships are the latest talk of the town. You’re probably asking yourself, why?

To kick off, here are five things you probably didn’t know about apprenticeships:

  1. There are over 250 apprenticeships to choose from, ranging from business administration and marketing, to boat building.
  2. You can do an apprenticeship that is equivalent to a degree.
  3. Apprenticeships can act as the first stepping stone in your career – they don’t just come to an end after a year. Take a look at Tash’s Success Story here.
  4. Many employers prioritise on-the-job experience, so an apprenticeship can help you to ‘Get Ahead’ of many students who go down the university route.
  5. It doesn’t cost you anything – you will be debt-free by the time you get qualified.

Now you have an insight into apprenticeships, take the time to explore the Sutton Apprenticeship Hub to learn even more. Take this chance to experience the life of an apprentice by reading our real-life case studies’ accounts. These students share their experience right from starting out, to getting the qualification. You can also explore our live jobs board to search for your perfect career!

Find your apprenticeship today!

Benefits of an Apprenticeship
By now you should have started to notice that apprenticeships can offer a wide range of benefits for you. The list goes on and on but here is our top five reasons that we think apprenticeships rock:
  • No student loans, so the money you earn while you learn is all yours
  • Fast route into a career of your choice
  • Practical work experience provides a wide range key skills
  • On completion you already have valuable work experience which will make you more employable
  • Competitive wages upon completion

Apprenticeship Levels

There are different levels of apprenticeships available to you, depending on your education background and experience.
To break it down, there are five levels of apprenticeships:
  • Foundation
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced
  • Higher Level
  • Degree

Apprenticeship Type

Equivalent to

NVQ level

Apprenticeship Type Foundation apprenticeship

Equivalent to A levels & BTEC Diploma

NVQ level Entry Level

Apprenticeship Type Foundation apprenticeship

Equivalent to GCSEs grades D-G

NVQ level Level 1

Apprenticeship Type Intermediate apprenticeship

Equivalent to GCSEs grade A*-C

NVQ level Level 2

Apprenticeship Type Advanced apprenticeship

Equivalent to A levels & BTEC Diploma

NVQ level Level 3

Apprenticeship Type Higher apprenticeship

Equivalent to Foundation degree or diploma

NVQ level Level 4/5

Apprenticeship Type Degree apprenticeship

Equivalent to Degree

NVQ level Level 5/6

Got any questions?

1. How much does an apprentice earn?

The great news is that you will be earning while you learn (instead of the other way around). Apprenticeship salaries vary vastly between each job role, but it’s worth knowing that the minimum wage for an apprentice is £3.30 an hour (as of October 1st 2015). Although money is an important factor when choosing an apprenticeship, it shouldn’t be the most important, purely because the on-the-job experience is invaluable to your future, and will help you to ‘Get Ahead’.

2. How long does it take to complete an apprenticeship?

Each apprenticeship level takes between 12-15 months to complete, and can start at any time during the year. If you are a keen bean and your provider is able to take you through the level faster, you may finish earlier than the full 12-15 months. There are a total of six levels of apprenticeship, so depending on how many levels you choose to complete it could take between one to five years.

3. How much time will I be allowed by my employer to spend on my apprenticeship work?

Each apprentice is entitled to a minimum of six hours study time a week. This can be spent in the office, at a specified college, at home, or wherever else is suitable – this is usually agreed with both the employer and apprenticeship provider.

4. How does an apprenticeship compare to a degree?

It is possible to attain a qualification that is the equivalent to a degree (level 5/6) under the apprenticeship scheme. Along with the qualification in your chosen field the apprentice will also be paid a salary, and gain valuable industry experience, unlike a university student.

5. How old do you have to be to apply for an apprenticeship?

You must be aged 16-24 to apply.

6. When do apprenticeships start?

Apprentices are free to start with an employer any time during the year. No scheduled term times, just a learning on-the-job role to help you to ‘Get Ahead’.

7. What if I don’t like my place of work?

If an issue between the apprentice and the employer were to arise, the qualification is transferrable. The training provider may support you in securing a new placement.

8. How come I don't need a CV to apply for a role?

You may have a great CV, but not everyone does. We want to make it fair to everyone who applies and so you will be contacted by a Training Provider to make sure your CV is up to scratch and that you are ready for the interview stage.

Job advice - CV Writing and more...

  • Step


    Choose from over 200 apprenticeships.

    From building planes to herding cattle, apprenticeships come in all shapes and sizes. You can find a whole host of apprenticeships using our jobs page!

    Find An Apprenticeship


    Find The Right Employer.

    To find the right employer offering an apprenticeship, you can go through a training provider for that type of apprenticeship, respond directly to the employer's advertisement, or approach any business directly and suggest they should take on an apprentice.




    You may be required to complete an application form and submit your CV and a covering letter detailing why you are right for the opportunity.



    Attend Your Interview.

    If your application is successful you will be invited to attend an interview. This is a vital step in securing your apprenticeship. Make sure you're prepared!



    After Your Interview.

    Upon a successful interview you will be informed of the start date. If the interview wasn’t successful, the employer should provide constructive feedback to help you improve your skills.