Top 10 Things to Know About Apprenticeships and Internships


Becoming an apprentice is a “plan of action”. Apprenticeships allow you to not only learn skills required for your career, but they also allow you to produce quality work and get paid to do so while you are learning. Apprenticeships also often offer credentials.

Paid Job + On-the Job Training/Education + Credentials = Apprenticeship

Apprenticeships can be in a variety of different fields. From Information Technology to Welding, programs are available to those who are ready to begin their career and don’t want to wait 2 to 4 years. You can explore around 200 different apprenticeable trades in New York State. Thinking you might want to earn your degree? The experience and knowledge you receive from an apprenticeship can lead to success in a 2- year or 4-year program. Some colleges even have combined apprenticeship degree programs.

Apprenticeships are highly beneficial training programs that stand out in a number of ways:

  1. They’re paid jobs!
  2. You get work-based learning.
  3. Some also have classroom learning.
  4. You receive mentorship from experts and masters within your field.
  5. You receive portable, nationally-recognized credentials within your chosen industry.



Internships differ from apprenticeships in a few key areas, but both options provide work-related experience that will help you gain the skills, knowledge, and connections that will lead you to a successful career. Internships are generally short-term (months) and are available in many different fields where apprenticeships are typically longer-term (years) and are only available in specific fields. Many colleges have programs that require internships as part of the coursework for students to receive their degree. Typically a college will have someone to help you coordinate your internship. Sometimes organizations, agencies, businesses, and/or nonprofits may not have an internship listed, but they are willing to take on an intern and develop an internship experience with you.

Internships can be paid or unpaid. They also have a less restricting structure than apprenticeships, so there can be a bit more flexibility  within the internship dependent on your supervisor.  Many internships will have you completing a final project as an example of what you have learned and skills you have acquired from your time as an intern.

Quality internships give you a rewarding work experience, mentorship in your chosen field, credits towards your degree, and possible a full-time job once you have completed the internship!