How to become a youth worker
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- a college course
- an apprenticeship
- working towards this role
- applying directly
You can do a professional youth work qualification, which is a degree recognised by the National Youth Agency. Degree courses include:
- youth work
- youth work and communities
- youth work and theology
You can do a postgraduate qualification to give you professional youth worker status if you have a degree in another subject and relevant experience.
You'll usually need:
- 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
- a degree in any subject for a postgraduate course
You’ll need a minimum of a level 2 qualification to work with young people aged 11 and over. Qualifications include:
- Level 2 or 3 Certificate in Youth Work Practice
- Level 3 Diploma in Youth Work Practice
Entry requirements for these courses vary.
You could apply to do an apprenticeship, such as:
- Youth Support Worker Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship
- Youth Worker Level 6 Degree Apprenticeship
Employers will set their own entry requirements.
You could start as a part-time youth support worker and complete training on the job. You could then use this to join a youth work degree course.
Employers value work experience with young people so it's important to get as much as you can. You'll often need at least one year of experience to apply for a job or course in youth work.
You can find voluntary or part-time youth work opportunities through the National Council for Voluntary Organisations or through a local youth service.
You could apply to become a youth worker if you've got experience and qualifications in teaching, careers guidance, probation or community development.
You'll be expected to complete a postgraduate qualification while you're working to give you professional youth worker status.
You can find out more about careers in youth work from the National Youth Agency.