Apprenticeships: The Good,The Bad and The Ugly

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by WelshJaffaCake, Aug 24, 2016.

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  1. I didn't know where to put this but thought since goverment is pushing more and more for apprenticeships with its target being 3 million by 2020.

    I thought be interesting to talk/debate about the pros & cons of apprenticeships and the best way to implement them without negatively affecting the employer & apprentice.Thought put the definition for it first since I see ads for full time store assistants tuning into retail apprentice and my favorite one I have seen a coffee maker apprentice.

    "a person who is learning a trade from a skilled employer, having agreed to work for a fixed period at low wages."

    You think any above go under graining a "trade" from an "skilled employer." Now before you old farts around here cry back "in my day I worked 16 hours a day seven days a week." ;) I do believe unless you're over 60 you benefited from worker's rights such as working time directive, sick pay, holiday leave etc and before you say we live in uncertain economic times. I ask why should my generation suffers for cock ups done by generation before us?

    Anyway feel free to tell me that I am wrong.

    Some reading on the subject.
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2016
  2. Thought be related to the forms Armed Forces probably provide best apprenticeship schemes.
  3. Taffjaffacake
    I am well over 60 and can tell you in my day an apprenticeship was a sought after position for many 15 year olds. The wages were poor for the first three years but after that increased. After 5 years you were qualified in the trade of your choice and started to reap the fruits of your labour.
    Most apprentices attended a full day at technical college plus 2 hours after the working day.
    Usually an ONC or City & Guilds was the outcome of this. Some apprentices continued at their own expense to learn gaining HNC or Full City & Guilds. These qualifications meant that a sideways step into management became a distinct possibility.
    Modern apprenticeships are nowhere near as good, sad to say
  4. Oh goody, another thread where many can moan that 'It's not as good as it used to be'
  5. At the risk of proving the stereotype, I don't think things are the same as they were.
    Whilst an apprentice is 'a person who works for another in order to learn a trade' I think that term is being stretched somewhat now.
    In our drive to validate everything that everyone does we have to attach formal qualifications to everything. In itself not a bad idea, but like many good ideas one that has been implemented in such a way as to devalue other, perhaps more worthy, qualifications.
    As Slim said, there was a time when apprenticeships were formal routes to a trade qualification that took 4 or 5 years to complete, where the apprentice learned their trade from a skilled craftsman, and were much sought after. I for example was taken on as an engineering apprentice at 16, attending college one day a week to study for an OND initially with further qualifications available to me. This was only as far back as 1988 and actually I was reasonably well paid with all the normal sickness and holiday benefits.
    At that time someone taking a job in retail would have been a trainee rather than an apprentice. I don't wish to sound like I'm belittling those in retail, but working in Currys flogging TVs can't be compared to a skilled fitter or welder for example. Now because they are 'Retail Apprentices' who are awarded an NVQ in retail sales at the end of a years training I feel the term 'Apprenticeship' has been undermined, and so I agree with Slim that modern apprenticeships aren't as good as what used to be understood by the term.
    I firmly believe that people should receive recognition for the work they do and qualifications are a good way of doing that, but training is not necessarily an apprenticeship. This applies as equally to the Armed Forces as it does to the outside world.
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  6. A 'Modern Apprenticeship' is different beast from what has gone before. I think that the modern apprenticeship is only an echo of the past not a mirror image.
    They are not all in retail. For example, the place where I work, the lady who runs the finance office for a large secondary school, started here as a modern apprentice. She still went to college one day a week until she finished her apprenticeship.
    It's not bad, just different.
  7. janner

    janner War Hero Book Reviewer

    • Like Like x 2
  8. Thanks for that Janner, made I laugh :)
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  9. All to do with the individual and their expectations, if they offered a training programme from an industry they intend to work in great go for it, if they just want a job to make ends meet then a minimum wage may suite? I have a feeling that youngsters of a certain age, cannot claim benefits and do not qualify for min wage. The way the government are pushing this it will be either Uni or an apprenticeship, almost like an extension of school with some cash.
    Unfortunately employers see them as cheap labour, some may offer work at the end, others will bin you once qualified and take on a new apprentice?
    I was lucky I started mine when I was 26 at HMS Collingwood.
    So unless your parents are loaded, what are your options?
  10. I don't disagree with you about the value of training, I merely feel that the term apprenticeship has been misappropriated in order to make them seem something they're not. Much like the new 'Foundation Degree' that replaced the HND I got from 'tiffs course. It's not a degree, and indeed accrues exactly the same points as the HND towards a degree, but the name change makes it seem like we are somehow investing in our people more. Which I suppose we are if giving people pointless post-nominals is investing in people.

    I also realise they are not all in retail, I was using that as an example. The fact that you can now do a Modern Apprenticeship in just about anything I think proves my point. I ditched my apprenticeship to join as a WEM, (because like most young men I was an idiot), and received a City & Guilds qualification for my trouble, followed by another one for LWEMs course. Now that training would be called a Modern Apprenticeship but at the time it was just training. Artificers course was an apprenticeship, which means it took me about 16 years from starting an apprenticeship to actually completing one!
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2016
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  11. [​IMG]
  12. I sent that picture to the wrong thread sorry :oops:
    A pub around here 90% of the staff are on apprenticeship wages, all food premade and is reheated so I hardly call that worthy of a year long training course and the best way to step into the cookery industry I am sure @dapperdunn would agree or serving drinks and collecting empty glasses. The owner gets them straight from school/college then dumps for another lot at end of the academic year. Now value of unskilled/low skilled workers in the service industry is another matter but if you work 40 hours plus a week whether that's helping to run a bar or working in a construction site. You have the right to have sick pay, annual holiday leave etc.

    *Thought leave some good note my friend just done his Level 2 Professional Chef Apprenticeship in the harbourmaster a 2AA restaurant, he's staying on another 2 years and being paid above the under 25 minimum wage.
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2016
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  13. IMHO, work is work.
    I guess it depends on what you want out of your life. If you are quite happy 'warming stuff up' and getting paid not much, then crack on. If you're not, then you need to get off your ass and find something else. There's plenty of kitchen jobs out there (join the mob for one!) Unfortunately, some people are not willing to start at the bottom, washing pots 12 hours a day, because that's where it starts. (Unless you're Jamie Oliver:))

    You'll be hard pressed to find a pub that doesn't use pre-made foods in some way shape or form.
  14. i had recently been in an "apprenticeship" in a used car dealers, turned out to be an absolute scam, i never went to college one day a week and i was put on different tasks than on what i was supposed to, then they changed my apprenticeship a month before it was due to finish so they could keep me on the shitty wage, i walked out after they hadn't paid me or several other staff for 2 months... Let's hope the RFA apprenticeship i'm going on ain't anything like this :p

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