Trade Apprenticeship Pay Rates put you $110,000+ ahead of Uni Grads after Year 3 of Study

Trade Apprenticeship Pay Rates put you $110,000+ ahead of Uni Grads after Year 3 of Study

Did you know that choosing a bricklaying apprenticeship will put you financially ahead of a 3 Year Bachelor’s Degree by about $110,000 by your 3rd year?   You will have earned a training wage while you learned a craft-based skill, plus your training fees are reimbursed by your employer and your tool costs are relatively minimal.

Meanwhile, the university student is paying fees upfront and relying on unskilled casual work to subsidise living expenses with no specific job prospect at the finish.  In fact, the report referred to below states that it takes an average of 4.7 years for a uni grad to find full time work in their industry of study.

This information comes from comparative data from mid-2017 (but pre the recent 3.3% Award Wage Increase of July 2017) published in the newly released report from Y13, After the ATAR  and ABBTF’s data on Bricklaying training rates.  The year-by-year comparisons make the financial sense of the apprenticeship clear – see the table below.   Even at the end of Year 3 of a potential four year apprenticeship, you’ve earned $88,000 while the uni. student owes $20,000, so you’re near $110,000 better off!  Based on a 3 Year Apprenticeship, you’re $118,000 better off.

There is also a Trade Support Loan which can make a big difference in the first two years of the apprenticeship, if used correctly.  The apprentice can opt out of the loan at any time and is usually done once wages increase after the second year.  The Dept. of Human Services also provides income support to eligible apprentices which can increase wages significantly.

We included carpentry rates in the comparative table below because it featured in the Y13 Report, but also to show the very little difference in bricklaying and carpentry apprenticeship pay rates.  The trade you choose should be based firstly on what you enjoy doing.

Another major plus in choosing a trade compared to a degree is that the training and work leads you directly into your chosen field.  The ATAR report states that 62% of uni students have considered dropping out during their course.  That represents a lot of disenchantment and would be partly related to the broader range of subjects covered, many of which won’t directly relate to the student’s hoped-for career job.

*Source - Become a Bricklayer - My future Freedom -

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