Apprenticeships and traineeships are unique as they classify as both an education and employment opportunity. They’re basically a way of learning a certain occupation or trade while you’re working, gaining practical experience and earning some sweet cash money.
Most apprenticeships are three to four years in length and can be completed in most trades, including electrical work, construction, carpentry, hairdressing, cooking, landscaping, automotive and heaps more. Traineeships are usually shorter, between 12 and 24 months, and can be completed in over 600 vocations such as business admin, sales, childcare, IT, finance, floristry, design and plenty more.
During your apprenticeship or traineeship, you will usually be required to visit a TAFE or other Registered Training Organisation (RTO) for the education aspect of your course. This will involve both theoretical and practical training, and will mean you will graduate with a certification, usually a Cert III, Cert IV or Diploma.
Will it suit me?
Apprenticeships and traineeships get you started in almost any industry you want, so they’re great for pretty much everyone. They’re especially worthwhile for people who learn through doing and thrive on practical experience, and for those who don’t particularly see themselves at university, or want to leave high school to pursue a trade.
What can I do?
A lot! Some of the most common apprenticeships and traineeships include: aged and disable care, agriculture, air conditioning and refrigeration, animal services, automotive, aviation, baking, beauty therapy, boating, boilermaking, business administration, cabinet making, carpentry, childcare, community work, conservation, construction, cooking, customer service, electrical, engineering, finance, fitting and turning, furnishing, hairdressing, health services, horticulture, hospitality, information technology (IT), landscaping, local government, media, mining, painting and decoration, printing and graphic design, plumbing, real estate, retail, sign making, sport and recreation, telecommunications, tiling, tourism warehousing.
How do I get there?
Many apprenticeships and traineeships are entry-level jobs, so you don’t need experience to get started (although it doesn’t hurt). Some require you to have completed to a certain year at high school; some just to Year 9, while others want to see you have a Year 12 or equivalent level of education. Completing a Cert II – what is sometimes known as a pre-apprenticeship – in your chosen industry can also help you get into an apprenticeship or traineeship.
Having your drivers license, own car and OHS white card often helps when applying for apprenticeships, while some traineeships will need you to have a police check or working with children check.
Is it a good industry?
There’s a lot to be said for getting experience while you’re in training, as it more effectively prepares you for a job in the industry. Apprenticeships and traineeships a perfect stepping stone from school into work, and they allow you to make a plenty of industry contacts. While the pay for apprenticeships and traineeships can be a little low to start with, it generally increases each year of your training. You simply need to ensure that you are completing your on-the-job and off-the-job training with a reputable provider who you can trust to keep you safe at work and wont drop you mid-apprenticeship for no reason.