Last updated: 22.06.13

Apprenticeships 'not just for the young'

Apprenticeships are becoming increasingly popular with people who have already begun their careers or who are struggling to find work and are not solely targeted at the younger generation.

Bath and North East Somerset Council in particular has noted there has been a large number of individuals in the region turning to vocational training as a way of learning new skills to improve their CV or find a job in a different industry, the Bath Chronicle reports.

One young woman, 26-year-old Jessica Newby, worked in the retail sector for ten years before deciding she wanted a change of career.

After completing a 12-month apprenticeship in cultural and heritage venue operations, she was appointed as a visitor service assistant at the Roman Baths where she is now responsible for operating an information desk, giving guided tours and leading teaching sessions.

Ms Newby said the apprenticeship programme she undertook was extremely useful and led her to complete three-month rotational placements in various departments. 

She added: "This taught me to be flexible and gave me experience of working with different teams and people, even picking up snippets of other languages to use in my job."

Meanwhile, Jonathan Carter from Keynsham applied for an HR apprenticeship with Bath and North East Somerset Council after being out of a job for a year.

Now, the 28-year-old is working as an e-learning apprentice and working towards a level three business administration qualification, which he said has provided him with skills that have made him more employable.

"If there isn't a role at the end of my apprenticeship, then there will be a wide range of other opportunities that I can apply for," he stated.

This comes after recent research from the National Apprenticeship Service discovered that applications for apprenticeships soared between February and April this year, with almost 370,000 applications made online during this period, marking growth of at least 32 per cent.