Becoming an Apprentice ….. Earning and Learning at the same time


What Apprenticeship is

Apprenticeship is a programme of structured education and training.

An apprenticeship combines learning in an education and training institution with work-based learning in a company. At least 50% of apprenticeship learning is completed in the workplace. Apprenticeships lead to internationally recognised qualifications.

Apprentices ‘earn while they learn’ – they have an employment contract and are paid a salary for the duration of their apprenticeship training.

Apprenticeships vary in length depending on the programme, lasting between two and four years. There are 56 different types of apprenticeship available across 13 different industry sectors. Apprenticeships offer qualifications from level 6 – 10 on the National Framework of Qualifications.

How you can become an apprentice

To become an apprentice in Ireland you must be hired by an employer. Apprenticeship employers are formally approved by SOLAS in advance of employing apprentices. Apprentices get a formal contract of employment as part of their apprenticeship.

To find an apprenticeship, you can search apprenticeship vacancies on the Jobs Portal. You can search for vacancies by location and by apprenticeship.

Your local Education and Training Board may also have details of employers seeking to employ an apprentice.

Eligibility criteria

Eligibility criteria depends on which apprenticeship you are applying for. Generally the minimum age varies from 16-18 years but there is no upper age limit.

Some apprenticeships may have minimum educational qualifications.

You will find the qualifications needed and full eligibility criteria in the detailed programme information for each apprenticeship programme.

Where to find out more

Supports for businesses who take on apprentices

The Apprenticeship Incentivisation Scheme provides financial support for employers who take on apprentices.

The incentive support covers all national apprenticeship programmes and will apply to any new apprenticeship programmes which are launched in 2020.

The Scheme provides a grant to the employer of €3,000 for each new apprentice registered from 1 March 2020. €2,000 of the grant is paid to the employer once the apprentice is registered, and a further €1,000 is paid after one year if the apprentice is still in employment at that time.

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