Apprentices at work

School leavers may be 'better off' as apprentices says IET

Students receiving GCSE results should consider apprenticeships as a path into engineering, the IET has said.

The IET, Europe’s largest professional body of engineers and technicians, urged students to consider alternate options to university into well-paid careers as it saw a 50 per cent increase in applications for its scholarships and grants from last year.

“I encourage young people to think about their options and pursue the education and career path that is right for them,” said IET director of policy Dr Tony Whitehead.

“Those receiving their GCSE results have a wide range of real choices and career opportunities – engineering in particular offers something for everyone from vocational apprenticeships, for the more practically minded, through to graduate and post-graduate qualifications for the more academically inclined.

“Engineering employers offer well paid and rewarding jobs for well qualified technicians, graduates and post-graduates.”

The IET says it actively promotes engineering and technology apprenticeships covering a diverse range of disciplines including software, mechanical, micro-electronic engineering, as well as technician.

It adds that many recruiters in these sectors are bucking the trend by diversifying and expanding technology and engineering capabilities, increasing demand for recruits.

“Many school-leavers may be better off considering apprenticeships,” said Gareth James, head of education at the IET.

“Not only do they represent good all-round training for those wanting to avoid the costs associated with higher education, but they actually represent an opportunity to place apprentices far ahead of new graduates.

“As well as the chance to study for a degree as part of their programme, apprentices also receive hands-on industry experience and earn employability skills, such as team working, which many employers say university graduates still lack.”

Further information:

See the IET E&T Career Guide

Find out about the Tomorrow’s Engineers programme

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