IT Apprenticeships: Why I chose professional qualifications over a degree

Laurence RyleLaurence Ryle,IT apprenticefrom Basingstoke, blogs about choosing to start his career in the IT industry withQA Apprenticeshipsstraight after college.

Having left college with good grades but finding no direction in full-time work, I decided to seriously consider the option of an apprenticeship. I was attracted by the prospect of gaining valuable new qualifications whilst working for a successful company, which would hopefully lead to a long-term career, or at least put me in a strong position compared to university graduates choosing a similar industry…

When I began to think more seriously about the direction I wanted my career to go in, one of my first thoughts was to consider IT; a long term interest which I had neglected to pursue in college but was eager to capitalise on due to the evolving nature of the industry. Bearing this in mind, the question was whether any successful company offering careers in IT would take on someone with little formal training or experience with computers outside of home and school use. The first step was to research my options.

Having heard about apprenticeships from one or two close friends, who had also been taken on by QA, this was the obvious place to start. After a few minutes’ research on online job sites I was given the option to apply to several apprenticeships. I was contacted by QA shortly afterwards and found myself being directed to several positions in IT with various employers, leading to a successful interview only a few weeks after my first application for a QA Apprenticeship.

“The opportunity to gain new qualifications after leaving college and earn a salary is difficult to ignore”

By choosing this path I found myself with the opportunity of a new start in a new career much sooner than if I had been applying to similar positions without any assistance from organisations such as QA. If someone who had been in a position similar to mine prior to my apprenticeship were to ask my advice I would strongly suggest them to pursue the option of an apprenticeship. The opportunity to gain new qualifications after leaving collegeandearn a salary is difficult to ignore, especially as the company training you may also invite you to take up a full-time contract after your apprenticeship period, due to their investment in you.

Considering the help you can get from QA with applications, the interview advice, the courses offered and the options for your future career, taking on an apprenticeship is a smart choice to make.

“I am developing well as a professional due to working in a high-tech office environment with qualified professionals around me”

Aside from the actual qualifications I gain from my apprenticeship, I am personally finding that I am developing well as a professional due to working in a high-tech office environment with qualified professionals around me. Interaction with experts in the industry can give you a good look at what is expected of professionals in modern jobs.

The skills I have learned already, and what I will be learning in the future regarding professional conduct and business etiquette, will be very valuable for my future career. This is one of the advantages of starting a job in a professional industry through an apprenticeship rather than a ‘dead end’ job or studying at university where this kind of experience will be a lot harder to come by.

QA have 100s of apprenticeship job vacancies available now with top tech employers across the UK.Search jobs near you using our vacancy search.

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