While two thirds would consider an apprenticeship as the most useful start in life

Half of Brits (47%) believe spending thousands of pounds on a university degree is not worth the debt when it comes to improving career chances, and over a third (37%) of graduates are in agreement, according to new research from Greene King.

The research, which was conducted for the UK’s leading hospitality apprenticeship provider to mark National Apprenticeship Week (4 – 8 March), found nearly two thirds (63%) would consider an apprenticeship as the most useful start to their career, and over four fifths (82%) see an apprenticeship as an attractive alternative to university. However, over half (59%) of people believe there just aren’t enough apprenticeship schemes around.

Many believe that apprenticeships should be made more accessible to those with a lower household income, with almost two thirds (65%) of people saying there should be more support to help them get into work.

One of the most important places that the next generation receives advice on what they should do in their careers is in the classroom.  However, the survey also revealed a shortfall in career advice at school. Over two fifths (42%) of most recent school leavers aged 18 to 24 found careers advice either not very useful OR not at all useful. One in five (22%) 18 to 24-year olds said they weren’t offered careers advice at school at all.  

Greene King, the UK’s leading pub company and brewer, works directly with schools and colleges to promote the opportunities available to students and offers an award-winning apprenticeship programme that has trained 11,000 people since 2011. As part of a series of commitments in the company’s Stepping Up report, which was published in January and looks at addressing social mobility, Greene King will support 20,000 apprentices by 2022. 

Rooney Anand, chief executive of Greene King, said: “We recognise that a university degree isn’t the only option for young people when embarking on their journey to kick start a successful career. Apprenticeships provide the opportunity to learn and earn – something that works really well for our team members. We offer apprenticeships up to Level 5, which is equivalent to a Higher National Diploma, and have seen time and time again our people develop from a stop-gap job serving behind the bar to developing their career to become a general manager with the opportunity of running a multi-million pound turnover business employing as many as 70 people.

“In fact our general managers are instrumental to the success of our apprenticeship programme with 95% of our pubs having supported an apprentice since we launched our scheme in 2011. As we celebrate National Apprenticeship Week, we’re delighted to continue our support of 20,000 apprentices by 2022 as we continue to champion this important approach to learning and career development.”

National Apprenticeship Week (NAW 2019) is an annual celebration of apprenticeships that brings the whole apprenticeship community together to celebrate the impact they have on individuals, employers and the economy.