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Anyone else giving/given up an apprenticeship/good job to go to uni?

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    Yep, finished my career end of December 2011.

    We have always planned to do this, we set a soft target of 2012 entry about three years ago and we made that target hard last September, we start Sept/Oct and we cannot wait.
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    Can't you study part-time alongside a full-time job now? With the new fee's, they're introducing tuition fee's for part-time students as-well. So you get your money off your job, and a degree. However, it will obviously take longer as it's part-time, but much more worth it!
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    I'm going to be 24 on entry and I'm giving up a £25K job to go to Uni in September.

    I'm a little worried about how I'm going to cope money-wise. I've just become so reliant on the fact that I've never really had to struggle with money :/
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    This is interesting because I'm considering doing an apprenticeship over a university degree. I'm honestly unsure what I want to do, even if I was to go to university I still wouldn't know what I want to do. I've got a HUGE interest in computers and originally I thought computer science would suit me down to the ground, but maths was never my strongest subject and I believe it's very maths based. Another huge interest of mine is engineering and how things work, I've always enjoyed taking computers apart and re-building them, I find reverse engineering the best method of learning, but once again it's a maths based subject and I'm worried I'll be overwhelmed significantly.

    Does anyone know if Open Days are a good place to go to get a general idea of a course, or whether they are more useful to decide if you like the university as a building and it's facilities?

    Any input would be appreciated greatly. I really really have no idea what really interests me, and I know that sounds stupid, but it's true. I think that's one of the reasons I'm more inclined to do an apprenticeship in engineering rather than go to university, because at least then if I don't like it I've not lost out on anything other than time. I'd much prefer that than have a student debt under my name. At the same time doing an apprenticeship is great for the next 5-8 years, but after that I'm worried I'll hit a brick wall and won't have much future prospects in the job. I would like to be able to support a family but at the same time not feel like every worked penny is going to everyone but myself, so future promotion prospects are a big ambition of mine, I want to be able to keep climbing up the ladder with the hard work I put in.

    AHHHHHHH!!!! :confused:
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    (Original post by Riotous)
    This is interesting because I'm considering doing an apprenticeship over a university degree. I'm honestly unsure what I want to do, even if I was to go to university I still wouldn't know what I want to do. I've got a HUGE interest in computers and originally I thought computer science would suit me down to the ground, but maths was never my strongest subject and I believe it's very maths based. Another huge interest of mine is engineering and how things work, I've always enjoyed taking computers apart and re-building them, I find reverse engineering the best method of learning, but once again it's a maths based subject and I'm worried I'll be overwhelmed significantly.

    Does anyone know if Open Days are a good place to go to get a general idea of a course, or whether they are more useful to decide if you like the university as a building and it's facilities?

    Any input would be appreciated greatly. I really really have no idea what really interests me, and I know that sounds stupid, but it's true. I think that's one of the reasons I'm more inclined to do an apprenticeship in engineering rather than go to university, because at least then if I don't like it I've not lost out on anything other than time. I'd much prefer that than have a student debt under my name. At the same time doing an apprenticeship is great for the next 5-8 years, but after that I'm worried I'll hit a brick wall and won't have much future prospects in the job. I would like to be able to support a family but at the same time not feel like every worked penny is going to everyone but myself, so future promotion prospects are a big ambition of mine, I want to be able to keep climbing up the ladder with the hard work I put in.

    AHHHHHHH!!!! :confused:
    I had a mate who went to Uni to do mechanical engeering, admittedly a while back now so things might have changed, but he hated it and dropped out, because what he really liked was taking apart and reassembling motorcycles, and that of course has nothing to do with engineering.
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    (Original post by Riotous)
    This is interesting because I'm considering doing an apprenticeship over a university degree. I'm honestly unsure what I want to do, even if I was to go to university I still wouldn't know what I want to do. I've got a HUGE interest in computers and originally I thought computer science would suit me down to the ground, but maths was never my strongest subject and I believe it's very maths based. Another huge interest of mine is engineering and how things work, I've always enjoyed taking computers apart and re-building them, I find reverse engineering the best method of learning, but once again it's a maths based subject and I'm worried I'll be overwhelmed significantly.

    Does anyone know if Open Days are a good place to go to get a general idea of a course, or whether they are more useful to decide if you like the university as a building and it's facilities?

    Any input would be appreciated greatly. I really really have no idea what really interests me, and I know that sounds stupid, but it's true. I think that's one of the reasons I'm more inclined to do an apprenticeship in engineering rather than go to university, because at least then if I don't like it I've not lost out on anything other than time. I'd much prefer that than have a student debt under my name. At the same time doing an apprenticeship is great for the next 5-8 years, but after that I'm worried I'll hit a brick wall and won't have much future prospects in the job. I would like to be able to support a family but at the same time not feel like every worked penny is going to everyone but myself, so future promotion prospects are a big ambition of mine, I want to be able to keep climbing up the ladder with the hard work I put in.

    AHHHHHHH!!!! :confused:
    Thing is, you can't do an Apprenticeship after obtaining a Degree, but you can obtain a Degree after an Apprenticeship. You're also correct; I dropped out of Computer Science as it is very mathematical based. You could always do a part-time degree while working after your Apprenticeship? I'm going to be studying part-time after mine (if I get took on, which I am) Otherwise, you could do it full-time after obtaining the apprenticeship experience and qualifications. I think it's the wisest choice.
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    I gave up a good job and a life on the other side of the world to go to uni. No regrets at all
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    I will be leaving the RAF this year, to attend Uni this September.
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    (Original post by Riotous)
    This is interesting because I'm considering doing an apprenticeship over a university degree. I'm honestly unsure what I want to do, even if I was to go to university I still wouldn't know what I want to do. I've got a HUGE interest in computers and originally I thought computer science would suit me down to the ground, but maths was never my strongest subject and I believe it's very maths based. Another huge interest of mine is engineering and how things work, I've always enjoyed taking computers apart and re-building them, I find reverse engineering the best method of learning, but once again it's a maths based subject and I'm worried I'll be overwhelmed significantly.

    Does anyone know if Open Days are a good place to go to get a general idea of a course, or whether they are more useful to decide if you like the university as a building and it's facilities?

    Any input would be appreciated greatly. I really really have no idea what really interests me, and I know that sounds stupid, but it's true. I think that's one of the reasons I'm more inclined to do an apprenticeship in engineering rather than go to university, because at least then if I don't like it I've not lost out on anything other than time. I'd much prefer that than have a student debt under my name. At the same time doing an apprenticeship is great for the next 5-8 years, but after that I'm worried I'll hit a brick wall and won't have much future prospects in the job. I would like to be able to support a family but at the same time not feel like every worked penny is going to everyone but myself, so future promotion prospects are a big ambition of mine, I want to be able to keep climbing up the ladder with the hard work I put in.

    AHHHHHHH!!!! :confused:
    (Original post by Himynameskiefer)
    Thing is, you can't do an Apprenticeship after obtaining a Degree, but you can obtain a Degree after an Apprenticeship. You're also correct; I dropped out of Computer Science as it is very mathematical based. You could always do a part-time degree while working after your Apprenticeship? I'm going to be studying part-time after mine (if I get took on, which I am) Otherwise, you could do it full-time after obtaining the apprenticeship experience and qualifications. I think it's the wisest choice.
    I agree with this, there is no point at all in going to uni if you aren't 100% sure what you want to study.

    @Riotous - I would try and find an apprenticeship/job and work out what you want to do at uni (if you still want to go!) before committing.

    I really wish I had done my degree 4 years ago at 18, but the place I had wasn't on a course I would of been happy with simply because I didn't know what I wanted to do then.
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    I'm giving up a $110k job that I hate in the US to move to London and go to uni and switch careers. I'm sure most people think I'm crazy to do that.

    I think I have to take an access course as I never even went to high school (!), I just have my GED diploma. I'm not even sure what I want to do yet, I'm thinking psychology.
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    (Original post by Riotous)
    This is interesting because I'm considering doing an apprenticeship over a university degree. I'm honestly unsure what I want to do, even if I was to go to university I still wouldn't know what I want to do. I've got a HUGE interest in computers and originally I thought computer science would suit me down to the ground, but maths was never my strongest subject and I believe it's very maths based. Another huge interest of mine is engineering and how things work, I've always enjoyed taking computers apart and re-building them, I find reverse engineering the best method of learning, but once again it's a maths based subject and I'm worried I'll be overwhelmed significantly.

    Does anyone know if Open Days are a good place to go to get a general idea of a course, or whether they are more useful to decide if you like the university as a building and it's facilities?
    ...............................
    AHHHHHHH!!!! :confused:
    Open days are good for both getting a feel for the university and finding out more about the particular courses on offer. Open days usually include a lecture from a staff member and often you will get a chance to chat informally to current students.

    Both Computer Science and Engineering courses often involve a significant amount of maths - they are mathematical sciences really... and Computer Science is usually more about software programming and theory than hardware.

    It sounds to me like you are more interested in the hands on stuff (taking things apart and putting them back together?), and apprenticeship might be a good route to go down. Then again I'm sure there are plenty of Computing or even Networking/Communications type courses which would also suit you.

    I also disagree with those who say you can't do a degree and then an apprenticeship or the other way around....... no reason why you can't imo.

    Personally I think university is a bit over rated.... I worked incredibly hard to complete an Access course and get here but there is a definite sense of anti-climax. If I had the chance to do a proper apprenticeship (not a micky mouse thing were you go and work in morrisons and get trained in 'till management' or other such *******s) I would certainly take it over university.
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    (Original post by sarah1982)
    I'm giving up a $110k job that I hate in the US to move to London and go to uni and switch careers. I'm sure most people think I'm crazy to do that.

    I think I have to take an access course as I never even went to high school (!), I just have my GED diploma. I'm not even sure what I want to do yet, I'm thinking psychology.
    Seriously giving up a $110k job to study Psychology in the UK? Why don't you just do part-time in the US? If they allow that?
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    (Original post by mike101)
    This is my plan this year.

    I'm currently year 3 of an apprenticeship, I've finished the main modern apprenticeship qualification and am now in my first year HNC which I am doing purely because my workplace want me to.

    It suddenly hit home a few months ago that this isn't what I want to do with the rest of my life so I've applied to uni.

    I am still unsure if i'll go through with it, and just wanted to know if anyone else is/has gone through the same?
    There's no reason why you can't go to uni, do a degree then go back and finish off your apprenticeship. If anything, it gives you twice the qualification of someone your age.

    I got a friend of mine who did an apprenticeship level 3 in some sort of engineering. The business went bust and he had to work in a bakery for a year before he found a new employer to carry on with his apprenticeship so I'm inclined to think that apprenticeships are continuable.

    Best of luck.
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    (Original post by sarah1982)
    I'm giving up a $110k job that I hate in the US to move to London and go to uni and switch careers. I'm sure most people think I'm crazy to do that.

    I think I have to take an access course as I never even went to high school (!), I just have my GED diploma. I'm not even sure what I want to do yet, I'm thinking psychology.
    The availability of psychology jobs, especially in the UK is asymptotic to zero. Fair enough if you hate your job and want to try something different. But I wouldn't say that giving up a 110 k USD job for psychology is a good idea.
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    (Original post by Himynameskiefer)
    Seriously giving up a $110k job to study Psychology in the UK? Why don't you just do part-time in the US? If they allow that?

    I want to live in London. I'm not set on psychology. I don't know what I want to do really. :-/
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    (Original post by tamimi)
    The availability of psychology jobs, especially in the UK is asymptotic to zero. Fair enough if you hate your job and want to try something different. But I wouldn't say that giving up a 110 k USD job for psychology is a good idea.
    I'm not sure what I want to do to be honest... I just know I don't want to be in IT anymore. I've been struggling with the good salary vs. happiness dilemma for years now.

    Should I just take A Level courses at a college?
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    or GCSEs? I'm so confused
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    (Original post by sarah1982)
    I'm not sure what I want to do to be honest... I just know I don't want to be in IT anymore. I've been struggling with the good salary vs. happiness dilemma for years now.

    Should I just take A Level courses at a college?
    Why would you do that.

    If you have a 110k paying job, I assume you've already done your pre-uni qualifications. So I see no point in you doing A levels, it'd be essentially redoing what you've already done.

    I think you're slightly confused about the British education system, because of the wording. For example, when we say "College", it doesn't mean the same thing here as it does in the USA.

    A levels are pre-uni courses. Bit like your idea of a high school.

    A levels will not qualify you for a grad job.

    You do A levels at Colleges and Sixth Forms.

    You do University courses at university. What I mean by that is, "Going to college" in American stance isn't the same in the British education system.

    Overall, the British edu system goes in level:

    Level 1 (Low graded elementary GCSE qualifications (E and D grades))
    Level 2 (High grades at secondary school GCSE qualifications (A* - C grades))
    Level 3 (Pre uni qualifications and apprenticeships such as A levels which you do at college or sixth form)
    Level 4 (Bachelor degrees and advanced apprenticeships)

    So if you're keen on doing something academic in the UK, you should be aiming for uni courses, not A levels.

    To apply to, or research, level 4 courses in the UK, go to www.UCAS.ac.uk

    G'luck

    P.s. I'm very sorry if I sound patronising in this: I'm assuming that you've been to school in the US and that you're not sure about the british edu.sys.
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    (Original post by tamimi)
    Why would you do that.

    If you have a 110k paying job, I assume you've already done your pre-uni qualifications. So I see no point in you doing A levels, it'd be essentially redoing what you've already done.

    I think you're slightly confused about the British education system, because of the wording. For example, when we say "College", it doesn't mean the same thing here as it does in the USA.

    A levels are pre-uni courses. Bit like your idea of a high school.

    A levels will not qualify you for a grad job.

    You do A levels at Colleges and Sixth Forms.

    You do University courses at university. What I mean by that is, "Going to college" in American stance isn't the same in the British education system.

    Overall, the British edu system goes in level:

    Level 1 (Low graded elementary GCSE qualifications (E and D grades))
    Level 2 (High grades at secondary school GCSE qualifications (A* - C grades))
    Level 3 (Pre uni qualifications and apprenticeships such as A levels which you do at college or sixth form)
    Level 4 (Bachelor degrees and advanced apprenticeships)

    So if you're keen on doing something academic in the UK, you should be aiming for uni courses, not A levels.

    To apply to, or research, level 4 courses in the UK, go to www.UCAS.ac.uk

    G'luck

    P.s. I'm very sorry if I sound patronising in this: I'm assuming that you've been to school in the US and that you're not sure about the british edu.sys.
    You don't sound patronising, no need to apologise.

    I understand the UK system. I make six figures but I never made it past Level 2. I want to go back to school because I'm not happy. Worst case, I can always go back to my current career.
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    (Original post by sarah1982)
    You don't sound patronising, no need to apologise.

    I understand the UK system. I make six figures but I never made it past Level 2. I want to go back to school because I'm not happy. Worst case, I can always go back to my current career.
    Well, in that case, there are plenty of level 3 courses for returners. More so in colleges than sixth forms, and most of them are part time except a levels.

    But whether it's worth moving to the UK just to do a level 3 course or not is up to you. I mean, surely you can do it right where you are without having to leave your job. Just an idea And once you have level 3 covered, come do uni here.

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