Choosing to study architecture at degree level can sometimes be perceived as being long winded and expensive. However, this couldn't be more wrong.

There are various ways to become an architect and RIBA are helping companies offer apprenticeships to students that are completing any parts of their architecture degree. Apprenticeships allow graduates to earn while they learn, with the company being able to also provide support and understanding across all RIBA plan of work stages. And is open to any socioeconomic background.

Lillie Bamford, Architectural Assistant at Pick Everard provides an insight into how apprenticeships can boost your learning, help get your foot through the door and build your network in the industry. She is currently studying at De Montfort University (DMU) whilst completing the apprenticeship (Level 7) with us at Pick Everard.

Lillie said:  "The Level 7 architectural apprenticeship has given me the opportunity to work towards my part 2 and 3 whilst working as an Architectural Assistant and earning a wage.

I am supported by an office full of people who have already been through the process so advice and guidance is never far away. I have also been assigned a personal mentor, Jade, an architect from my office who is available for more in depth discussions of my design and technical work. This is an invaluable resource unique to students studying part-time. It is hard work but I think it’s the best route in terms of support, professional development and also not having to worry about adding to your student debt.

Also, being in the first cohort of architectural apprentices is really exciting. The course is a positive step by the RIBA towards making the profession more inclusive as the alternative of studying a two year masters, full-time is very expensive and runs the risk of pricing out students from less privileged backgrounds."