Older apprentices or mature students

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Slightlypuzzled
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Hi everyone,

I started a new job in Manchester in September at 31years old as a engineering degree apprentice. I work with and go to university one day a week with 18-20year olds.

Every week someone will say something along the lines of ‘the general rule is you should be chartered by 30’. I’ve been asked ‘so you were born in 1988...so you were there for the millenium?’ [and with wide eyes] ‘what was it like?’

And other age related things have been said. Over the last three plus months I have sustained people assuming I’m a grad or the ‘how old are you?’ followed by the jaw-drop look whenever I meet someone new. I can’t apply for PWI Young Achievers Award because I’m too old. Or the School Leavers Award. I didn’t apply for the ICE scholarship because having just left self-employment (no engineering background) I couldn’t provide the reference. I worry my career progression will be very restricted or that my employer will think I’m unmotivated or apathetic.

I really didn’t think this would be such a problem. My friends range from a just turned 20years old to 65years old and we never discuss our ages. I’ve worked people as young as 16 and as old as 71. Before I joined, I never felt like ‘an old person’, or a young one. I was just a person. University is only one day a week and it’s in Liverpool so it’s near impossible to find other mature students.

1) are there any older apprentices out there?
2) does anyone know if I could join mature student groups from other universities as mine is too far away for any lunch time or evening meet-ups?
3) open to any other suggestions
Last edited by Slightlypuzzled; 1 year ago
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adam271
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University is a bubble.
You just gotta be at peace with it.
It's nice in a way as kids (18-21 year olds) are so idealised and are so sure about everything yet you have the benefit of experience to know the world is not yes and no and black and white.
They think they know so much yet they live in a bubble and really know very little. It's not their fault but it is what it is.

As for not being able to apply for the 'school leavers' award or the 'young achievers' award what is the issue? The name implies you are not really a candidate for either.
Just enjoy the course and dont focus on the few negatives.
Last edited by adam271; 1 year ago
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Slightlypuzzled
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I guess the problem is opportunity, or lack thereof. Being seen and measured in the same way as other apprentices but without the same opportunities
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adam271
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(Original post by Slightlypuzzled)
I guess the problem is opportunity, or lack thereof. Being seen and measured in the same way as other apprentices but without the same opportunities
What opportunities are you lacking?
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Slightlypuzzled
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The option to apply to those things. It’s not a system that encourages inclusivity
Last edited by Slightlypuzzled; 1 year ago
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adam271
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(Original post by Slightlypuzzled)
The option to apply to those things. It’s not a system that encourages inclusivity
But your not a school leaver.
Your not a young person either.

Awards often target particular groups.
If I could I'd be the world's fastest in the under 10, 100 meters but I can't.

These awards don't even mean much anyway.
You could probably argue that you have an unfair advantage as you are older and have more life experiences.

Regardless don't focus on it.
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