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During a traineeship, you can apply the theory you have learned at school in work and network with employers in your future sector while studying. A traineeship must be paid for. In particular, students at polytechnics and universities should sign an employment contract for their traineeship.

The traineeship of a student at polytechnic or university is mainly based on an employment contract and carried out in an employment relationship with the company. A mere traineeship contract is signed only if the characteristics of an employment relationship are not fulfilled.

You should sign an employment contract for the traineeship and complete the traineeship in your sector’s work tasks, adapting them to the requirements of your degree together with the employer. By signing an employment contract for the traineeship, you can improve your position and you will also be covered by the company’s occupational health and safety services.

Remember to ask for a certificate of employment from your place of traineeship afterwards, which will make it easier for you to find your next job.

Unfortunately, unpaid traineeships have become more common. There are a number of employers who either do not pay trainees at all or only provide a small amount of compensation which cannot be regarded as wages. We in Trade Union Pro believe that traineeships should be remunerated based on the tasks. Indeed, several of our collective agreements have explicitly agreed on traineeship pay.

In a traineeship, the employer will appoint a workplace instructor for you who will act as your contact person between the workplace and your school. They plan your workplace learning, guide and support you in your work, and also evaluate your learning with different parties according to agreements and plans. Your instructor is also entitled to compensation.

You should join a trade union in your sector when already studying. Then, you can receive help for making a traineeship contract or advice on issues related to the traineeship’s work practices, for example. Pro’s student membership is free of charge and you receive the same benefits as other members. Our members who graduate from polytechnics/universities of applied sciences include engineers, building engineers, those with bachelor’s degrees in business administration, and laboratory analysts. Pro members who graduate from universities include economists and masters of science in technology.

A student at an upper secondary school comes to the workplace under a training agreement between the educational institution and the employer. According to the training agreement, the trainee is not in an employment relationship with the company, the company has no obligation to pay wages, and the school organises the healthcare services.

Despite the training agreement, you can sign an employment contract with the employer. In practice, this means that the work you do is remunerated on the basis of a collective agreement. Several of Pro’s collective agreements define a trainee’s pay. However, several companies offer meal allowance and monetary incentives for good work. Different possibilities should be discussed with the employer’s representative.

If you are a Pro student member, you can receive help and tips for negotiations from our Noste career service, free of charge.

If you are at least 15 years old, you can study in apprenticeship training. It is a popular way of acquiring a profession, deepen your professional skills or learn entirely new skills. In practice, you will then have a fixed-term employment contract with the company.

Apprenticeship training is full-time study and requires initiative, activity, and autonomy. The majority of studying is realised as practical tasks at the workplace. You will have a personal study programme that takes into account your previous competence.

Theoretical studies are free of charge for students. The training organiser, such as an apprenticeship centre or agency, pays your employer compensation for your guidance. The work you do is paid at least under a collective agreement, which is usually about 70–80 percent of the corresponding salary or the lowest graded salary in the sector.

At the workplace, you will be assigned a responsible trainer, who will be responsible for guiding your apprenticeship and your on-the-job training. It is your employer’s responsibility that you can participate in theoretical studies in accordance with your personal study plan. Upon completion of the training, you will receive a certificate from the employer containing an assessment of what you have learned. You can also switch from a training agreement to apprenticeship training and complete your studies in the apprenticeship agreement.

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