Do you want to get paid while learning new skills? An apprenticeship might be the right program for you. You can earn a fairly high salary from one of the top companies in tech. Read below to learn how to apply for an apprenticeship, find the best tech apprenticeships, and put your best foot forward as an apprentice.
What Is an Apprenticeship in IT?
An IT apprenticeship is a combination of on-the-job experience and academic learning. Employers hire recent graduates or inexperienced aspiring tech professionals to help them get qualified for a permanent job in IT. Besides getting real-world skills, many apprenticeship applicants also get a professional certification or license.
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Tech Apprenticeship vs Internship: 3 Key Differences
While both an internship or apprenticeship in technology will help you get more experience, there are differences between the two. An apprentice gets practical training and classroom instruction, whereas an intern only focuses on work experience. Below are the main distinctions between a technology internship and an apprenticeship.
Internships are typically shorter than apprenticeships and run for the summer or one semester. At most, an internship should go on for about six months. However, apprenticeship training will last longer than an internship, as you’ll spend more time in a classroom. Internships don’t include classroom instruction, just work experience.
Payment and Compensation
If you search for apprenticeships in New York, Boston, San Francisco, or other areas, you’ll notice each employer will probably list a salary. This doesn’t work the same for interns, as internships are often unpaid or only offer a low stipend. Trades offering apprenticeships will offer you a salary, even if it’s only minimum wage at first. Apprenticeships at Microsoft and other large tech companies will pay quite highly.
Apprenticeship programs generally offer more job opportunities than internships. They’re more likely to give you a job offer once you finish the program. Eligible employers invest time and resources in training you, so they are more likely to hire you when your apprenticeship is completed. Internships can also get you jobs, but not as often.
How to Apply for an Apprenticeship in IT: 3 Easy Steps
1. Research Ideal Programs
Do your research on apprenticeships to determine which program is best. It’s important to evaluate a number of factors when looking for an apprenticeship program. You should research the entrance requirements, the location, the salary, and the time commitment. It’s crucial to be realistic at this stage, as you don’t want to take on a job you can’t fulfill. Keep in mind there are specialized apprenticeship opportunities for specific niches and roles. Many companies offer apprenticeships for women, students graduating with a master’s degree, and more.
2. Personalize Your Application
Tailor your apprenticeship application and cover letter to suit the program you’re applying for. Doing this proves you took the time to understand the requirements and the program itself. Your application needs to convince the apprenticeship program provider you’re the best fit for the job. Include your experience, education, and motivation to work and learn.
3. Prepare for the Admission Process and Interviews
The admission process and interviews will vary between apprenticeship programs. That’s why you need to find out what the admission process entails. If it’s a technical interview, look up the job skills and practice beforehand. For behavioral interviews, determine why you want to join the program, your career ambitions, and why the company should choose you.
Top 10 Tech Apprenticeship Programs to Apply For
There are many apprenticeship opportunities for aspiring tech professionals. These programs can help you land some of the best tech jobs. Many programs also offer mentors and decent salaries. An apprenticeship program provides professionals with job training and a better chance at top-shelf career opportunities.
1. Junior Data Scientist Apprenticeship by IBM
- Duration: 24 months
This apprenticeship is for entry-level aspiring data scientists who want to learn machine learning, data modeling, data preparation, and statistics. While you’re learning important skills, you’ll complete specified milestones and earn an IBM certification. Although you can finish this apprenticeship at your own pace, IBM prefers you do so within two years.
2. Tech Support Specialist by CompTIA
- Duration: 2,328 hours
- Minimum Qualifications: 10th-grade math and English skills
During this apprenticeship, CompTIA will train you to be a tech support specialist. Your responsibilities will cover troubleshooting network issues, configuring cloud applications, and securing operating systems.
The instruction part of this apprenticeship includes safety training, time management, critical thinking, interpersonal communication, and help desk ticketing. During the first half of your program, you’ll earn around $15 per hour. This figure will increase to $18 per hour in the second half.
3. Systems Support Apprentice by IBM
- Duration: 12 months
- Minimum Qualifications: High school diploma or GED
You will use the latest tools and technology while working as a systems support apprentice. IBM expects you to complete your training in about a year. Because this program is approved Department of Labor (DOL), you’ll get an official credential from IBM after graduation. Apprentices can join IBM in a full-time role after this program.
4. Network Engineer Apprenticeship by Franklin Apprenticeships
- Duration: 12 to 18 months
- Minimum Qualifications: High school diploma or GED
In this program, apprentices will travel to meet with clients, perform troubleshooting, fix hardware and software, and provide backup monitoring for client systems. You will also need to do things like install firewalls and build networks.
Franklin Apprenticeships require apprentices to have two years of experience in networking engineering and IT certification. You’ll get a pay raise after each of the three industry-standard certifications you’ll earn during this apprenticeship program.
5. Data Science Apprentice by Simple Technology Solutions
- Duration: 12 months
- Minimum Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree and four years of IT experience
If you want to become a data scientist, this apprenticeship program is a great avenue. In this yearlong apprenticeship, Simple Technology Solutions (STS) expects you to put aside about 10 hours a week specifically to learn about the job. This apprenticeship is broken down into three phases.
In the first phase, you’ll be studying and covering any knowledge gaps about this job. The second phase consists of hands-on learning in a programming environment. In your final phase, you will complete on-the-job training for 90 days with mentorship and guidance from seasoned STS employees.
6. Front End Engineer Apprenticeship by Rapptr Labs
- Duration: Unspecified
- Minimum Qualifications: Up to two years of experience with React and basic familiarity with Github
This full-time paid coding apprenticeship lets entry-level front end engineers without a degree get hands-on experience. This apprenticeship includes benefits because it’s considered a full-time position with the company. Because of that, they’ll only hire applicants they think will work hard and commit to becoming permanent employees after the apprenticeship.
Some tools and technologies you’ll work with include Firebase, Slack, Jira, Apollo, Basecamp, AWS, and Revenue Cat. You’ll work beside senior developers by developing, modifying, and testing code and leading front end engineering projects.
7. Software Development Apprenticeship Program by Techtonic
- Duration: 3.5 to 9.5 months
- Minimum Qualifications: Unspecified (no college degree or coding experience necessary)
Techtonic offers paid software development apprenticeship opportunities for three and a half to nine and a half months. To apply for this program, you’ll have to complete an online application and pass a series of technical tests and phone interviews.
This apprenticeship will train you in basic skills for software development and soft skills. Companies come to Techtonic to hire software developer apprentices because they don’t have to pay as much, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to practice what you’re learning. After graduation, you can assume a full-time role at Techtonic or one of its client companies.
8. Mobile Application Developer by Woz U
- Duration: 33 weeks
- Minimum Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree or higher
Over 10 courses, people in this online apprenticeship program cover Objective-C and Swift programming languages, mobile user interface, mobile data, and analytics. You will have lifetime access to the course materials and certified mentors.
Woz U doesn’t disclose much information on what the responsibilities of this apprenticeship entail. However, it has designed this program to fulfill the needs of employers and equip apprentices with a combination of practical and soft skills to excel in mobile application development.
9. Software Engineer Apprenticeship by Revelry
- Duration: 3 months
- Minimum Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, or bootcamp certificate, or self-taught skills
This apprenticeship program provides a dedicated mentor, and you can learn a lot of soft skills as well. Apprentices must collaborate with senior professionals, give their opinions, and solve problems using industry-standard technologies and practices.
10. IT Apprentice by New Apprenticeship
- Duration: 12 months
- Minimum Qualifications: Some college, 1 year of experience with programming languages
Candidates for this apprenticeship are required to work for 10 to 15 hours per week. The program requirements are flexible, and candidates must be fast learners with the ability to solve complex problems and communicate well. This apprenticeship will help you start a rewarding career.
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The training provider will make sure you have mentorship and guidance while you perform troubleshooting, review checklists, support the technical team, and provide cyber support. You will also monitor database systems, networks, applications, and operating systems and participate in software development lifecycles.
Top 3 Benefits of a Tech Apprenticeship
The benefits of a web developer apprenticeship or similar programs are that professionals can earn a salary while expanding their skillsets, and it’s much easier to break into tech as an apprentice. Plus, apprentices also don’t have to worry about student debt. We’ve listed the top three benefits of tech apprenticeships below.
- You can earn while you learn. If you’re fresh out of high school and have basic knowledge in tech, you can expand your expertise while earning a salary during your apprenticeship.
- Breaking into tech is easier. After your apprenticeship, you can become a full-time employee and start getting valuable work experience. Whatever your dream tech career is, it will be much easier to land if you can say you have experience.
- You don’t have to worry about student debt. Many students struggle to pay for their programs and end up in debt. Even if your apprenticeship program requires a fee, it can sometimes be covered by your employer. Some apprenticeships even offer college credit.
How to Apply for an Apprenticeship in Tech FAQ
It’s not difficult to get an apprenticeship if you meet the minimum requirements. Applying for an apprenticeship program is like applying for any other job position. If you have what the employer is looking for, there shouldn’t be a problem.
Yes, it is worth doing an apprenticeship. Apprenticeships let you learn career-specific skills while earning a living, so you don’t have to stress about student debt. It’s also much easier to land the job you want because an apprenticeship will equip you better than classroom training alone.
Yes, you do get paid for being an apprentice. Your salary will depend on the company you work for and the terms of your contract.
Some apprenticeships do cost money. As you’ll be earning a salary during your apprenticeship it will be easier to pay off this cost. Also, some employers will cover the cost of the program.
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