Pathways to employment

In this section you will find information about ways to find employment after education

Helping young people to progress and achieve their potential.

Who we are?
Prospects, part of Shaw Trust works with the City of London Corporation to ensure that all young people who live here, have access to high quality Careers Information, Advice and Guidance.

We have been working in the City for more than 10 years, supporting young people to plan their career journey and achieve their potential.

Who we support
If you are a City of London resident aged 13-19 (and up to 25 if you are a care leaver, or if you have learning difficulties or disabilities) we can support you.

What we support with
Whether you want to be an artist, a florist, an entrepreneur or a surgeon, we can help you on your journey. We can also help you understand your options if you are still unsure.

We help by providing Information, Advice and Guidance on Education, Employment and Training. We can also help you understand the steps required to get your dream job, plan your longer-term goals and support you with your next steps.

Our support is tailored to you! It could include;

  • Finding apprenticeships and helping you apply
  • Finding the best college or university programme for you and helping you apply
  • Helping you create a strong CV and supporting statement
  • Giving tips and support to prepare for interviews
  • Finding additional support to help with any learning difficulties or disabilities
  • Talking through any worries or concerns you may have
  • And much more…

How to contact us
To find out how we can help you, contact us on the details below.

Matilda Newman-Smart

What is an apprenticeship?
An apprenticeship is a structured, work-based training programme where you gain job-specific skills and on-the-job work experience while studying towards a nationally recognised qualification. You get paid to do a real job, work alongside experienced staff and get practical insight into the work place.

An apprenticeship is also a career option, a route into employment for school leavers and young people up to age 24 who are serious about pursuing a career but choose not to go to university because:

  • It’s costly and even a good degree from a top university won’t necessarily guarantee a job upon graduation.
  • They don’t have the grades to do the degree they want at a university of their choice
  • They don’t want to be stuck with a hefty personal debt from 3-4 years at uni (average expenditure per academic year is £24,000 – more for London.)

And, apprenticeships can be an important route into sustainable employment.

What you could get
As an apprentice you’ll:

  • Gain the skills and experience sought by employers in your chosen field
  • Get a head start up the career ladder
  • Earn while you learn. The minimum wage for first year apprentices is £3.30/hour and apprentices can earn £150-200/week or more.
  • Start building a network of peers
  • Avoid the cost of going to uni

There are three levels of apprenticeship available for young people aged 16 and over:

  • Intermediate (equivalent to a level 2 or 5 GCSEs A* - C)
    Works toward work-based learning qualifications such as an NVQ Level 2, Functional Skills and, in some cases, a relevant knowledge-based qualification. Programmes take between 12-18 months to complete.
  • Advanced (equivalent to a level 3 or two A-level passes)
    Works toward work-based learning qualifications such as an NVQ Level 3, Functional Skills and, in most cases, a relevant knowledge-based certificate. Programmes take between 15-24 months to complete.
  • Higher (equivalent to a level 4, 5, 6 or Foundation degree or above)
    Works toward work-based learning qualifications such as an NVQ Level 4 and, in some cases, a knowledge-based qualification such as a Foundation Degree. Programmes can take up to three years to complete.

Apprenticeships work towards three types of qualification:

  • Functional: training in skills in maths, English and ICT with a particular focus on problem-solving and ability to apply these skills effectively in real situations
  • Technical: training in skills needed to accomplish specific mathematical, engineering, scientific or computer-related tasks
  • Vocational: training in practical skills in a specific field of work, generally learned from hands-on experience

To be eligible for the programme, you must be:

  • 16-24 years old
  • Eligible to work in England and a resident of the European Union for at least three years
  • Not in full-time education or educated to level 4 or above

Individual apprenticeship positions will have different requirements in terms of aptitude, skills, qualifications and experience.

Please note: Enthusiasm, commitment, initiative and reliability are always needed.

Traineeships are education and training programmes with work experience for young people who are motivated to get a job or apprenticeship but lack the skills and experience that employers are looking for.

The aim of traineeships is to help a young person become 'work ready'.


Step Up aims to support people with mental health issues to access, and sustain, volunteering and/ or paid work as part of their mental health recovery. The project is open to anyone who has experienced mental ill-health, aged 18+, who is a Hackney resident or is registered with a healthcare professional in Hackney. People can self-refer themselves or be referred to us by a health or social care professional. 

We use a range of different strategies to support people to move on with their lives including tailored, specialist 1:1 support from staff to find suitable volunteer and paid opportunities; monthly socials; peer support; signposting to training and community activities; wellbeing workshops and employment workshops.

See form in downloads.