Student area

At Heartlands Academy, we want all students to have a successful future. In order to achieve this, students participate in the activities below during their time with us. It is important for students to carry out their own career research and make good use of the additional sites that the academy uses. For example, Unifrog (Year 7-13) and Pathways CTM (Year 9 and above). Each week, we publish a job of the week in our morning PowerPoint and highlight opportunities that students can get involved in. These might be linked to developing Curriculum Vitae (CV) or engaging with a particular employer or sector. Our careers pages provide students with a central place to access valuable and helpful career information.

Explore different choices

Aim Higher West Midlands has a range of extremely helpful and clear advice. We encourage you to explore the site.

A helpful overview of your post-16 options

If you are thinking about university, why not search and compare undergraduate courses in the UK?

BBC Bitesize Careers.

In-depth job profiles, recommended for Years 11 upwards. (The series ‘What Can I Do with My Degree?’ is very useful for post-16 students).

Careers films on the web for various careers.

Explore career sectors and the jobs within them.

Interesting articles, recommended for Year 11 upwards.

Start is another excellent and free resource that enables students to explore the world of work via subjects, interests, skills, employers, or industry. This site is certainly worth investing some time on. It also provides access to the latest labour market information.

Career ideas and information for your future. This is a superb free site that will help you search for different jobs and explore different career case studies. They have created a wide range of excellent career videos on different job roles.

In Year 9, we use the lens of the NHS to explore some of the 350 careers in the NHS – why not get a head start?

The Youth Employment website provides 14-24-year-olds with free resources, advice and guidance.

The Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award, known as iDEA is an international award-winning programme that helps you develop digital, enterprise and employability skills for free.

Your Game Plan’s mission is to ensure that every student has the confidence and support they need to make the best decision about their future when they leave school. They have lots of free online courses for you to explore and complete.


What is an apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships allow you to combine work and study by mixing on-the-job training with classroom learning. You’ll be employed to do a real job while studying for a formal qualification, usually for one day a week either at a college or a training centre. By the end of your apprenticeship, you will have gained the skills and knowledge needed to either succeed in your chosen career or progress to the next apprenticeship level.

Eight facts you need to know about apprenticeships

  1. An apprenticeship is a real job available to individuals aged 16+ (with no upper age limit). Apprentices are typically employed for at least 30 hours per week.
  2. There are thousands of apprenticeships in more than 170 industries.
  3. New apprenticeships are advertised each week covering a wide range of job roles. You will be amazed at the variety and breadth available!
  4. Apprenticeships last a minimum of 12 months Most apprenticeships take between 1 – 4 years to complete. It will depend on the level and delivery model of the apprenticeship.
  5. Apprenticeships range from level 2 to level 7 There are apprenticeships at levels equivalent to GCSEs right up to Master’s level and you can now achieve a degree through an apprenticeship.
  6. Apprentices do not pay for their training. All apprenticeship costs are paid for by the employer and/or the government, meaning that an apprentice will never have to pay for their training.
  7. Apprentices will receive 20% off-the-job learning. 20% of an apprentice’s paid time will be spent undertaking off-the-job learning and gaining valuable skills and qualifications.
  8. Apprentices are paid a salary. All apprentices will earn a salary of at least the National Minimum Wage for apprentices which is currently £4.81* per hour. Many employers pay more! Apprentices will spend 80% of their time on-the-job 80% of an apprentice’s paid time will be spent on the job, working with colleagues to learn new skills and gain experience in the workplace. *The National Minimum Wage for apprentices is reviewed each April.

Levels of apprenticeships

Traineeships: Level 1 or Level 2 (equivalent to GCSEs or below). These last a maximum of 6 months, they are unpaid but you gain skills and qualifications.

Intermediate Apprenticeships: Level 2 (equivalent to 5 GCSEs)

Advanced Apprenticeships: Level 3 (equivalent to 2 A Levels)

Higher Apprenticeships: Level 4 and above (equivalent to foundation degree and higher)

Degree Apprenticeships: Level 6 or Level 7 (equivalent to a bachelor’s or master’s degree)

How to find apprenticeships

  • Careers fairs
  • Company websites
  • On the search tool on Unifrog
  • National apprenticeship website – (usually from November)
  • Social media: Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn

Helpful apprenticeship links


Traineeships the perfect way to gain experience and to build your confidence. They are designed to help you take the next step into an apprenticeship, work or study.

A Traineeship is a fully-funded education and training programme for 16-24* year olds (*25-year-olds with an Education, Health and Care Plan) to build employability skills and gain valuable sector-based experience through a work placement.


Virtual work experience opportunities

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