BY KATE VUKOMANOVIC, LEARNING SERVICES MANAGER, BRC LEARNING

With A-Level results out today and more than 300,000 students waking up to their results, we can be assured that up and down the country will probably be (in this order), celebrating and then working out what they are going to do next. For lots of students they will already have a plan, when they submitted their UCAS form earlier this year they were probably pretty certain what would lie ahead. But for many students they might not feel that University is right for them or they could be in the difficult position of being unable to afford to go. These students are the ones who could really benefit from knowing a little bit more about what other opportunities are out there.

So, what is out there? Well, speaking as someone wholly involved in all things retail, I can honestly say that retail has A LOT to offer. Not only does retail employ over 3 million people in the UK, in the year 2017/18 54,000 apprentices started a course in retail. Although going to University might have been at the heart of what many students wanted to do, the opportunity to get a degree, for free and whilst working is becoming a very attractive opportunity for those that seek to take it.

Of course, you might be asking the question about what sort of degrees could be on offer at a retailer and the truth is, it really depends what you are looking for. Retailers of all shapes are sizes are offering programmes to existing and new staff, in areas of business you may not think of when you think about the retailers you use. Over the past few months www.rethinkretail.org.uk has been busy interviewing apprentices from all over the UK, doing everything from Software Engineering, Pharmacy, Business Management and Cyber Security, so if you thought retail was just about stacking shelves, it’s time to think again.

With rising debts and increases in reports of mental health, surely it’s time to think about the other options out there for students who might not be able or might not want to follow a traditional University path. The world of retail has so much to offer and the results day is just the beginning. So whilst students are celebrating into the wee hours, let’s think about how we can help them achieve their potential together.


To find out more about careers in retail please visit www.rethinkretail.org.uk.