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More students considering apprenticeships and full time employment

School leavers are opting for alternative routes to a career and are choosing not to go to University. As businesses continue to offer a wider range of apprenticeships, and students have the option to learn on the job, fewer are opting to go to University in favour of other career paths.

Over 5,427 students nationwide, aged 16-17, who were taking part in the ICAEW business skills competition (BASE) regional finals, were asked if they would consider apprenticeships rather than going to university:

  • 14% plan to actually follow that path to apprenticeships or enter straight in to full time employment, whilst 19% still remain undecided
  • Whilst 67% have chosen to continue to university, down from 79% last year

ICAEW Director of Global Student Recruitment, Sharon Spice, said:

“It is fantastic to see that students are being open minded about how they reach their chosen career.  We are finding that more students are asking us about ‘how they can become an ICAEW Chartered Accountant’, rather than assuming there is only one way.  The good news is there are many routes now in place, which ensures that learners of different types have access to the profession via a path that suits them.  The challenge is ensuring that all parents and teachers recognise the pros and cons of the various routes – as their opinion is often sought by the students at this stage in their education.

“Historically, apprenticeships are always associated with blue collar, labourer style jobs, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Some of the country’s biggest employers are now offering students the opportunity to start working straight from school, and learn on the job. This does not only offer students experience of the working environment, but also allows them to start earning a wage and frees them from any debt.”

There are over 1.7m chartered accountants around the world – talented, ethical and committed professionals who use their expertise to ensure we have a successful and sustainable future.

Over 150,000 of these are ICAEW Chartered Accountants. We train, develop and support each one of them so that they have the knowledge and values to help build local and global economies that are sustainable, accountable and fair.  

We’ve been at the heart of the accountancy profession since we were founded in 1880 to ensure trust in business. We share our knowledge and insight with governments, regulators and business leaders worldwide as we believe accountancy is a force for positive economic change across the world.

ICAEW is a founder member of Chartered Accountants Worldwide and the Global Accounting Alliance.

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