What will you do after finishing your compulsory schooling? Many young people are facing this very question. In Switzerland, there are a few options. If you like studying, you may choose to continue your education at a business school or go for a higher degree. But, if you’re ready to move on from school, you could opt for professional training, a program that will prepare you for a trade in 3 to 4 years. There are over 230 training programs from which to choose!
In most cases, your apprenticeship would take place at a company where you would learn from associates who have been trained to work with young apprentices. Each week, you would spend 1 to 2 days in class at school where you would learn a portion of what you need to know for your future job. Each year, there would also be intercompany courses during which you would undertake trade-specific training. As an apprentice, you would receive a small salary, enough to pay for weekend outings or even vacations with your friends!
This system has been a real success story in Switzerland. Two-thirds of young people in Switzerland choose this type of education. Each year, around 70,000 Federal Diplomas of Vocational Education and Training are awarded! Obtaining a Federal VET Diploma makes entry into professional life much easier. If you have demonstrated enthusiasm and motivation throughout your training, chances are good that your training company will keep you on after you’ve finished your apprenticeship.
Governments in some countries encourage young people to complete lengthy university educations in order to get a good job. However, once finished, they often have difficulty finding a place in the workforce. On the other hand, apprenticeships are offered by training companies, not schools. This advantage ensures better regulation and makes it easier for apprentices to find work. It is worth noting that while the unemployment rate in the rest of Europe is approximately 8 %, in Switzerland it is around 3 %. 😉
For more information about education in Switzerland, please go to orientation.ch.