How much does a physics apprenticeship cost?
Absolutely nothing! As an apprentice, no matter the level of qualification you receive (A-level vs master’s degree), you won’t have to pay for any of your training. This means that you don’t have to worry about student loans or getting a part-time job to fund your education.
In contrast, it costs university students paying fees of up to £9,250 a year, or £27,750 for a three year course. The cost of a postgraduate degree can vary wildly, costing between £5,000 to £30,000, with STEM degrees usually on the higher end. Thus, completing an apprenticeship allows you to save a lot of money.
How much do apprentices earn?
Even though apprentices spend a minimum of 20% of their time training, they still receive a salary. Apprentices are even paid when they’re away training, and if they receive study leave for exams. The amount of money you earn depends on your age, and how long you’ve been doing your apprenticeship. If you’re aged 16-18 (or 19 and completing your first year), you’ll be paid at least the National Minimum Wage for Apprentices, which is currently £4.81 an hour.
If you are aged 19 or over and have completed your first year, you’ll be able to earn the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage rate for your age. For example, if you’re aged 18-20, you’ll earn £6.83 an hour, while those aged 21-22 earn £9.18 an hour. This wage goes up every year in response to inflation.
Although earning a salary is amazing, many physics apprentices earn higher salaries than the minimum wages listed above. A number of high profile companies (British Airways, Rolls Royce) offer physics-related apprenticeships (the aforementioned are in engineering), and provide apprentices with high salaries and other benefits. They do this to encourage students to apply, and to stand out from other companies offering similar opportunities!