Next steps after Yr 11 & Yr 13

Inspira is here to help young people make decisions about their future.

Here at Inspira we understand that it has been a worrying time for young people and there is still lots of confusion. Along with their parents, some young people are unsure what the future holds.

As the Career Advice experts in Cumbria, we are here to help you. We have created loads of content to help you get on track. Our advisers have advice and tips to help you navigate the next step. So why not spend some time browsing this page and check out our videos on our specific page for 16-24yr olds. Click here to find out more.

Scroll through our links to see what other help we have

Careers Information & Tools

Further Education Colleges

Sixth Forms

Apprenticeship Providers and Trainers

Useful Job Websites

Higher Education

Careers Information & Tools

Need more information about careers which would suit you? Unsure which jobs you’d like to do? Need more information on your post-16 options? These websites will help:

Kudos will give you all the information you need to make important decisions about future careers and training you can do to reach your career destination.

It includes a questionnaire, 'My Future', that helps you match their interests and qualification aspirations to a list of suitable careers.

License code is: cookopen20 – then create your own username and password.

The National Careers Service provides information, advice and guidance to help you make decisions on learning, training and work opportunities.

See job profiles for information on over 800 jobs, helping you ensure you have the right skills and qualifications.

icould provides career inspiration and information by providing different ways to think about careers. You can freely access over 1000 personal video stories, detailed job information, plus practical tips, insight and advice.

Investigate careers that interest you and decide whether to do an apprenticeship or go to university, then get applying.

Further Education Colleges

Local colleges offer a wide range of vocational courses – linked to different areas of work. There are also different levels of courses and school leavers start at the level suited to their ability. See websites for more details of courses and how to apply:

Sixth Forms

These are centres, mainly based in schools, offering courses beyond GCSE. The majority of courses on offer are A levels although some centres offer Level 2 courses (these are equivalent to 4 GCSEs at 4 or above). Most centres have entry requirements for their A level courses. Click this Google Search and view the websites for more details of courses and how to apply:

Apprenticeship Providers and Trainers

Listed below are the websites of organisations who recruit most local apprentices and where vacancies are advertised. However, this is not an exhaustive list and other companies may recruit through their own website; always check for an apprenticeship link.

National Apprenticeship Website Many national and local companies recruit through this website. You should register so that you can search and apply for vacancies.

You can also choose to be alerted about vacancies. Go to: to search for vacancies within travelling distance of your postcode. They recruit Engineering, Business Administration, Customer Service, Teaching Assistant including Higher Level and Degree apprentices for some of the larger companies in the County.

The following companies train their apprentices through Gen2 so you have to apply through Gen2’s portal. However, interested applicants should also contact them direct with a CV.

Other Engineering Apprenticeships

Other Career Options

Armed Forces 01228 522873 01228 523958 01228 523359

If you are interested in a career in the armed services, you should use the relevant Forces website to look at information initially as these gives lots of information. There is a joint Forces Careers Office 94-96 English Street, Carlisle – individual phones as above. You are advised to contact them to book an appointment to ensure that you can be seen.

Useful Job Sites

Higher Education

You apply for university through the UCAS website but it is also packed with information about options after Year 11, what university is about and the mechanics of applying. You can search for courses that interest you across the UK using the UCAS ‘Search Tool’.

‘the leading independent guide to UK universities’ which ‘provides a guide to UK universities, student life, gap years, open days, student finance and all things studentish.’

Information on student fees and loans ‘What to study, where to go and how to get there’

Local Universities