An apprenticeship and career in the trades is just as financially lucrative across a lifetime as a university degree, according to a new report by economic think tank BERL. The average person taking the apprenticeship path had a higher net financial position for most of their career and was exposed to less financial risk.
"Because of the head start you get as an apprentice, because you're not paying off an accumulated student loan, you manage to buy a house earlier, you manage to pay off the mortgage earlier and over the lifetime of the career path you are financially better off," said chief economist Ganesh Nana.
The BERL model finds that at the start of their career (age 25) apprentices are earning significantly more than graduates. By the middle of their career (age 40) apprentices were more financially secure.
There is plenty of work; the construction sector is looking strong and the medium-term outlook is good, but there are record numbers of advertisements for experienced tradies, and on top of that, we are recovering from an extended downturn induced by a GFC that saw many businesses turn away from taking on apprentices. However, there may be a solution for businesses in the construction sector. Why not train someone, why not take on an apprentice? It just takes some time, generally around three and a half years and, some commitment.
It is amazing what these young people can achieve when given the opportunity. All it takes is commitment, providing the right opportunity, the right environment and the benefit of the employer’s experience. They will earn while they learn, most likely never be out of work and just consider the future business opportunities available to them.
Good Electrical say, forget a double degree in accounting and law. Consider plumbing along with a marketing degree, or an electrical apprenticeship and a business degree, because let's face it, electrical is the best trade!