While hefty tuition fees from Universities may cause many secondary school students to think twice about University, planning a path to a career you’re passionate about can be easily acquired through apprenticeships. Specifically, if you’re passionate about the arts, culture, and working creatively, the depth of creative apprenticeships now on offer throughout the UK can allow you to bypass University altogether or, with a degree apprenticeship, combine work and study within the creative industry.
From employers in industries such as Film, TV, Music, Fashion and Graphic Design the opportunities for creative apprenticeships are endless. As well as this, with contracts and courses offered in other areas such as photography, screenwriting, interior design and painting and decorating, the scope of some of these apprenticeships can extend into projects where practical experience can kickstart your career. Normally designed for students or young adults aged between 16 and 24 these sorts of apprenticeships can give you the opportunity to explore the creative world and gain invaluable work experience with companies that encourage creative flair and passion.
With the length and type of apprenticeships varying from company to company, creative apprenticeships are normally quite flexible. Working either full-time or part-time and under the period of anywhere between one day a week to an 18-month full-time paid contract, creative apprenticeships can offer a perfect blend of work and study. Some companies like EY even offer apprentices the opportunity to work as a degree apprentice, combining your creative approach in the workplace with part-time study at University. However, due to the incredibly popular nature of some of these industries, creative apprenticeships can also be fiercely competitive, and sometimes companies will have strict requirements for their applicants. Smaller companies may require apprenticeship qualifications up to level 2 and possibly 5 GCSE grades, while larger companies like Warner Bros and Channel 4 may require A level passes in English & Maths and possibly some specific experience working in the creative field - whether it be experience with things such as video editing or samples of your own design work.
While work at these sorts of apprenticeships can sometimes be quite demanding, those that take a passionate and positive attitude (even in the face of criticism) will reap the rewards of advancing your knowledge and your career in the creative industry.
With this in mind, it’s important to realise that some employers in the creative sector are searching for attitudes and personalities that can be exclusive to working creatively. As some office spaces or lines of work rely on innovation and the churning out of creative content, being unique, multi-tasking and operating calmly under stress can make you, as a candidate, stand out. As well as this, as some companies require a portfolio of work, be sure to do your research; considering and catering your content to try and fit the company as well as you can - extra effort always pays off.
- By Max Lewis