Who Needs Uni? I’m going skiing!

With record numbers of teenagers declined places at Universities across the country this summer, a vocational course with real earning potential, a professional qualification and no debts could be a very attractive alternative.

When UCAS announced over 600,000 people had applied for courses starting this autumn, early predictions indicated up to 50,000 students will miss out on a place in further education altogether. With estimated debt said to be in excess of £27,000 and with the new university fees being introduced for 2012, apprenticeships are looking more favourable for students who are looking for more practical on-the-job training.

One industry that still requires no formal University level qualification might be the perfect option for those who have missed out: ski instructing. What’s more, the cost of training to become a ski teacher is less than that of one year at University for most students and allows you to be on the slopes by December fully qualified, with the potential to earn up to £15,000 in the winter season.

Snoworks Gap programme, based in the French resort of Tignes offers an 8 week instructor training course in the autumn, so that candidates can start teaching skiing the same winter. To gain entry onto the course, skiers need only have around 10 weeks ski experience under their belt and be able to confidently ski a black run. A personable and approachable attitude can also help a great deal, as gap students are going forward for an internationally recognised teaching qualification.

Annabel Seel, started her path to success on a Snoworks course five years ago and now works with European Snowsports in Verbier. Seel, who didn’t attend university herself said,
“ I had a fantastic time on the Snoworks gap course, I learnt so much and the experience was invaluable. Since completing the course I have worked my way through the BASI (British Association of Ski Instructors) system and now hold the ISTD (International Ski Teacher Diploma) qualification allowing me to teach across the world.”

With tuition fees at a price too high for many and the prediction that 2012 students will leave university with double the debt of their predecessors, a vocational option looks like the way forward for many of those who failed to secure a place for September or decided that university just wasn’t for them.

Annabel also works for Snoworks on selected weeks: “working for Snoworks is a huge privilege, coaching with some of the best skiers and trainers in the industry is fantastic. I thoroughly enjoy being a part of such a prestigious team and the Snoworks environment is just so infectious.”

For more information about our Gap course, please click here or email Lee Townend, Snoworks Gap Director

Ski Gap Courses (5) Ski Instructor Training (5)