Differences Between Learnerships and Internships

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Learnerships and internships both provide you with work experience, and both can be the start of a long and successful career. But there are big differences between the two.

Internships have been around for a very long time and the details vary greatly between companies.  There are no strict rules on how long the intership should last, or what the person will do while on the internship.

A Learnership is a much more recent idea, which was started when the government introduced the national skills development legislation.  A learnership is defined in the Skills Development Act so it has strict criteria.

A learnership must include a formal training component as well as the workplace experience part. If you successfully complete the learnership you will get a formal, nationally-recognised qualification.

The other great benefit of a learnership is that by law you must be paid a learner’s allowance.  The exact amount depends on the level of the learnership but you can find out from the Department of Labour.

The important thing, whether you do a learnership or an internship is that you check all the details to ensure that you are getting a good deal.  If the company won’t give you all the details about what you are being paid and what you will do on the job, be very suspicious.  

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