You child doesn’t want to go to University?  There is another way forward.
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You child doesn’t want to go to University?  There is another way forward.

By In Blog On 10th January 2019


Let’s face it, the last thing every parent wants to see is an unhappy child.   The pressure is on to get those UCAS applications completed with their course choices.

If your daughter or son is thoroughly miserable about doing this, point blank refusing, or sticking their head deeply in the sand, this is a clue that they could be headed for joining the ‘dropped out in the first year’ statistics.  Do you want to see this pain?

There are other options that may be a better fit for them.  Dubious?  If you can give me 5 minutes I can tell you about some exciting alternatives. A multitude of international companies are very keen to nab bright students after A-Levels.

Degree Apprenticeships and Professional Training Programmes

The fields of business, finance, IT and engineering have the most opportunities, for a good reason.

Young people who are likely to excel in these sectors tend to be hands-on types who will thrive when learning on the job in a structured environment.  They are likely to dither and wither in an ivory tower.

Be aware that these programmes are very challenging.  Not everyone is suited to managing both employment and study, but the big players in these industries have a track record in turning young people into valued managers – fast.

Just 3 examples of post A-Level opportunities to give you the idea.

EY: 6 programmes that will pay a salary of about 22K during the apprenticeship and result in either a bachelor’s degree or a professional qualification at master’s level from the Institute of Chartered Accountants. https://ukcareers.ey.com/students/programmes/apprenticeships

Capgemini: BSC in Digital Technology Solutions or a BSC in Leadership and Management.  They also have an 18-month Level 4 qualification in Cyber Security.  https://careers.uk.capgemini.com/apprentices/. (This is called a Higher Apprenticeship).

Rolls Royce: 10 programmes, offering degrees in Engineering, Project Management, Materials Laboratories, Supply Chain Management and more.

https://careers.rolls-royce.com/united-kingdom/students-and-graduates/apprenticeships-and-school-leavers/a-levels

So, with a salary, a free (sponsored) degree and a ready-made career path, what’s not to like?

Wondering why you haven’t heard about this?  I can tell you.

Sixth Forms have a process in place to check and submit large numbers of UCAS applications on the same timeline.   They just aren’t set up to support apprenticeship applications, which have similarities to graduate job applications.  These have individual deadlines, forms and interview stages.

Another reason is that Sixth Forms are required to report the ‘destinations’ of their leavers for government statistics.  Naturally, this leads to competition for the number of students accepted to high ranking universities.

The number of students who drop out in the first year is not their concern.  But it could be yours.

If your daughter or son isn’t interested in these industries, don’t despair!  For a long list of universities and employers offering alternatives see this Which? Guide: https://university.which.co.uk/teachers/introduce-higher-education-options/higher-and-degree-apprenticeships-guide-download

Let’s face it, some of the best and brightest might be happier getting started in ‘the real world’ at 18.

If you’re wondering whether this option might be right for someone you know and love, I can help them compare it to others.  The decision is theirs.

If a degree apprenticeship or professional training is the way forward, I can research opportunities and make the application process easy, while they focus on their A-Levels.


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