Work-based learning programs are educational tracks that provide direct exposure and experience to a career path. These programs offer a valuable look at a career path for anyone considering their career options, and they offer experience and networking that would otherwise be unavailable. The more common types of programs include internships, co-ops, and pre-apprenticeship programs. Here’s a quick primer on the difference between these programs:
- Internships – An internship is a temporary position with an emphasis on on-the-job training rather than merely employment, and it can be paid or unpaid.
- Co-ops – Cooperative education programs establish and maintain strong collaborations (partnerships, associations) between secondary education and key members of industry.
- Pre-apprenticeship – Pre-Apprenticeship programs are designed to prepare students or professionals before they apply for an Apprenticeship. An Apprenticeship is a combination of on-the-job training (OJT) and related classroom instruction under the supervision of a journey-level craft person or trade professional.