The government has laid out ambitious plans to make apprenticeships one of the cornerstones of the new parliament.
The Conservative party has pledged to create three million new apprenticeships by 2020, including requiring public bodies such as hospitals and police forces to take on apprentices.
In addition, the term ‘apprenticeship’ will be protected by law, to help maintain high standards and promote apprenticeships as an equal alternative to studying for a degree at university.
“If university graduates have their moment in the sun, so should people who undertake apprenticeships,” said Skills Minister Nick Boles.
“Businesses know their value, so it’s high time they were recognised by both the public and in law as being equal to degrees.”
An apprenticeship is a way of learning a profession that combines getting on the job work experience in paid employment while gaining knowledge and qualifications with a college or training provider.
Nescot offers apprenticeships in a diverse range of courses, from Team Leadership, Business and Computing to Motor Vehicle Maintenance, Childcare and Animal Studies, as well as Hair, Beauty and Construction.
“Apprenticeships are a great way for people to earn as they learn, and to gain professional practical experience alongside their qualifications,” said Joe Ballantine, Head of Apprenticeships at Nescot.
“We know how much employers respect apprenticeships, so we’re heartened to see they will get equal footing in law to university degrees.”
Apprenticeships are offered at Intermediate (Level 2), Advanced (Level 3) and Higher (Level 4 and above), and take one to four years to complete, depending on the level.
Apprentices are guaranteed to learn at least the National Minimum Wage for Apprentices, but many earn much more.
The government pays for the training of people aged 16 to 18, and makes a contribution to the cost for people aged 19 and over.