The Education and Skills Act 2008 (external link) states that young people must participate in education or training until they are aged 18. This could take many different forms, such as education, apprenticeships or work with training. This page should signpost you to information on the various avenues of work and education that you could consider as school leavers, as well as work experience and other opportunities to boost your CV.
CAP: Cambridge Area Partnership 14 to 19
Cambridge Area Partnership is a partnership of all the state-funded providers of education and training for 14 to 19 year olds in Cambridge, East Cambridgeshire and South Cambridgeshire. Visit the Cambridge Area Partnership website (external link) for lots of information regarding further education, apprenticeships, work experience, careers, transport and more.
Apprenticeships combine practical training in a job with study. Visit our apprenticeships information pages to find out more, including how to apply.
To find a local apprenticeship, or one that suits your requirements, visit the GOV.UK Apprentice Finder (external link)
UCAS have also produced a UCAS guide to apprenticeships (PDF)
Work experience is a great way to trial out different industries while building up your CV.
If you are interested in undertaking work experience at the council, view our information about work experience placements.
It is often worth reaching out to a business or industry that you are interested in working in, as work experience opportunities are not always promoted, but will be created where there is a demand.
Are you aged 18-30, and looking for work in admin and office? Perhaps interested in working for the civil service or public sector?
If so, and you would benefit from gaining work experience, please ask your work coach about the Jobcentre's Movement to Work (MtW) program.
The offer is a one week, hybrid program, 20 hours in total - can offer some flexibility with dates to fit with you.
MtW runs once a month (last week in the month), two days online (MS Teams) and three days in person work experience.
The course includes:
- Confidence building content and tasks
- Job searching and employability skills
- Preparing for an interview or a mock interview
- Project work
- Work shadowing and work experience with staff at the Jobcentre
- Certificate upon successful completion
and much, much more!
Volunteering is another great way to gain work experience skills and boost your CV., while often allowing you to support a community or project.
Voluntary and Community Action East Cambs (VCAEC) are an independent charity in East Cambs who match volunteers with organisations who need their skills. Visit the VCAEC website (external link) for information on what opportunities are available for under 25 year olds.
Local Time banks are another great way to volunteer to support your community. For information on your local time bank, see the links below:
- Fordham timebank (external link)
- Littleport and Ely timebank (external link)
- Sutton timebank (external link)
Other ways to volunteer:
- Vinspired (external link) - leaders in youth volunteer opportunities, search for opportunities in your area.
- Do-It (external link) runs a database of volunteering opportunities.
- NCS (external link) is a summer programme of activities, events and volunteering to provide you with the skills you need to set you up for the future.
- Volunteering with libraries with Cambridgeshire County Council (external link)
For further information on volunteering and how to access opportunities, visit the GOV.UK website volunteering information (external link).
There are a range of post-16 qualifications you can work towards, which can be tailored to your own skills and interests. These can be to train you with specific skills for a certain career path, or so that you can develop your interest in broader academic subjects.
- For information on what qualifications are available, what each of these entails and to complete quizzes to find out what might suit you best, visit UCAS Post-16 qualifications (external link).
- Cambridgeshire County Council provide information on the various further education and sixth form colleges across Cambridgeshire.
Finding a job, either alongside your studies, or once you leave education, requires a range of skills you may not be familiar with as a school leaver.
- Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority have a career explorer (external link) to help you learn more about making career decisions
- For general job interview advice, visit the Prince's Trust job interview guide (external link). The Prince's Trust has also produced a guide to getting and staying hired for more general advice on work, job searching and applications. See the latest newsletter of programmes that the Princes Trust have on offer for young people (PDF)
- For information on how to apply for local jobs, visit the Cambridgeshire County Council employment and training webpages (external link).
- To find youth-friendly employers near you, visit Youth Employment UK (external link)
Looking for a job, attending further education or supporting yourself on a wage for the first time can come with new financial responsibilities that you have not previously encountered.
The government has set aside some money to set up a bursary for 16 to 19 year olds who may need financial support to stay in further education or training. Find out more about information on the 16 to 19 bursary fund on the Cambridgeshire County Council website (external link)
UCAS have also created a general guide to 16 to 19 financial support (external link)
Research and learning
Find out more about research, learning, and your local library service:
Other links you may find useful:
- CICSO Network Academy (external link) - IT training courses and information on IT as a career.
- Encyclopaedia Britannica (Student) (external link) - (You will need to be a member of the Library service to access this page)
- Dictionaries section (external link) - (You will need to be a member of the Library service to access this page)
- Driving Theory Test and Citizenship (external link)