For students who already know what job they want to do, a degree apprenticeship may present the best of both worlds. The number of places and range of subjects covered is still quite small compared to a standard undergraduate degree but, if you are lucky, it can present an opportunity to learn while you earn...
I never entertained the thought of a gap year. I thought such a year was meant for traveling and I've never been enamored by the idea. Schools don't really talk to you seriously about taking a year out; it's sort of a "you're on your own" policy, which is a scary concept even when your gap year is premeditated.
Very few of us make enough time to sleep in our lives- even if we can. Almost all of us are sleep deprived. Of course some of us don't have any choice: people in health and emergency services, long-haul airline pilots, and families with young babies (especially if they sleep as little my son Toby did!).
somehow, teachers seem to get blamed for disappointing results with the credit for the best results going entirely to their students. The thought of photographers taking shots of delighted teachers leaping in the air outside their schools, reading glasses and sensible cardigans flying in all directions, is so ridiculous that it's utterly delightful.
Many of you have finished your exams for the year and the rest will be finishing soon. And that means your immediate future, while you wait for your results, is a unique period of around six weeks where everything can feel very uncertain. But while it's a nerve-wracking time, it's also a period of opportunity.
Whether you are going to university or into the job market I hope you'll set out to 'earn and learn' throughout a career that will be all the more rewarding if you do. The retail industry is a good place to do that. It is often a first job for many school leavers and it's a fulfilling place to build a career, providing a lifetime of learning and opportunities.
The nation's bosses are increasingly looking at the personal qualities candidates can bring to the table, both immediately and in the long term. But just whose responsibility is it to ensure young people don't just place more emphasis on these skills in job applications, but on achieving them in the first place?