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  • Michael Barrett
    OFFICE MANAGEMENT APPRENTICE, CANTERBURY, KENT

    Different every day

    I am really enjoying it. It is different every day, you never do the same thing

What is an apprenticeship?

An Apprenticeship is an opportunity for you to gain skills and a qualification whilst earning a real salary. Rather than paying for training, you get to work alongside experienced staff and gain a nationally recognised qualification – all whilst being paid.

What’s changing?

From 1 April 2017 several improvements are being introduced which you can benefit from:

  • Anyone over 16 has the opportunity to become an apprentice
  • New standards geared to give you relevant training will be available
  • New higher and degree-level apprenticeships are being introduced

‘Made in Kent’ is a campaign that aims to increase apprenticeship opportunities for young people . Kent County Council is keen for people in Kent to learn about all the new advantages being introduced for apprentices. If you want more information you can contact our advice line on 03000 415 005 or email us at kep@kent.gov.uk.

Who can do an apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships are available to anyone who is over 16 and designed for those who want to learn and progress in a working environment. 

Funding rules have changed so apprenticeships are open to all! 

Why become an apprentice?

There are huge benefits to becoming an apprentice. These include:

  • Earn while you learn – very few other opportunities offer you the chance to develop your skills and abilities by gaining a recognised qualification AND be paid for it at the same time.
  • No debt – Other pathways you could look at taking are university. This would mean starting your career in debt, while the training for apprenticeships is fully funded so there are no costs.

  • Gain a recognised qualification - At the end of the apprenticeship, the apprentice will have a qualification that employers will recognise and understand.  

How does an apprenticeship work?

An apprenticeship is an opportunity to continue learning, whilst earning money in the process. It is a real job with a real employer, in which you work towards earning a nationally recognised qualification. The apprentice will be paid a salary and will have a contract of employment all whilst gaining a step on their career ladder. An apprenticeship can be completed either by day release once a week or a monthly tutor visit, this depends on the training provider.  

What can an apprentice expect to be paid?

The Apprenticeship minimum wage is currently £3.50 per hour (£3.70 from 1st April 2018), although many employers choose to pay above and beyond that, and we encourage them to do so. Many employers also offer performance related pay rises throughout the apprenticeship, as they would with any other employees. If the apprentice is 19 years old when they complete their first year as an apprentice, then their wage will increase to the national minimum for your age category.


If enrolling in an apprenticeship would be financially difficult for you, you may be entitled to support through the Kevin Lynes Apprenticeship Scheme.


Kent Wheels 2 Work scheme provides an invaluable opportunity for people struggling to reach places of work, education or training. They provide low cost loans of mopeds and bicycles. This help goes hand in hand with practical support in planning their journey, taking care of their vehicle and safety training. It can be a lifeline to people living/ working in rural areas with little public transport or working Sundays or late shifts when alternatives aren’t available.