My son is an apprentice in carpentry - that's what he chose to do rather than stay any longer in high school...;)
But when he'll have finished his four years apprenticeship he will be able to chose between several options to get a higher degree in Switzerland:
a) study for one year at a school full time and get the a college degree for professionals (I mean people who are craftsmen, like for instance mechanics) and so he could enter a technical university after that.
In case he would think about studying languages like French / Italien (which he certainly wouldn't do), then he could take a course and learn Latin, because that topic is only taught in certain types of the "normal" colleges.
b) he could work on in his job and after a while get a master in carpentry. That's a specific education for each profession, in his case carpentry as I mentioned, and after that he will have an allowance to educate apprentices in a firm himself - and, of course, would have learned all you can know about carpentry.
c) he could work on in his job part time and go to college in the evenings, on Saturdays etc. Which, of course, is a hell of a workload but chosen by quite some young guys to earn money and get a higher education.
d) And that is what he most probably is going to do: think about a type of study that he would like to enroll in any field...
So let's see what he will do.
Apprenticeships are quite common in Switzerland, so more than 50% of the teenagers do that here, but it is not so common in other countries, as far as I know.
Most of the apprenticeships last 4 years, starting by the age of 16. Some of them are done in 3 years.
And nowadays, even older people get a chance to take one up - sometimes with a smaller number of topics at the schools depending on their former education.
And what does your week look like in an apprenticeship?
You work in a firm for 3 1/2 days and go to school for 1 1/2 days.
As an option, you can go to school even 2 days and get your (technical) college degree within those 4 years, so as to enroll without a test to a technical university afterwards.
The system of apprenticeships have been set up for decades now and each branch has it's own schools / classes.
So you can get an education in any field: from hairdressing, bank clerk, plumbing, roof making, assistant nurse (you need to be 18 to do a proper nurse education), polymechanic, IT-specialist, florist, farmer, baker, butcher, builder of string instruments - you name it... If I remember that correctly, there are about 150 different professions enlisted that you can choose from.
Of course, it increases your income as soon as you have finished your apprenticeship successfully with a test and practical work.
My younger son is now in his third year.
But it is to say: many of those young people decide later to get a higher education... -> not too many of them continue working in their field for too long;). So there is always a demand for professionals....
May I ask you:
-> Is there any similar kind of educating young professionals in your country?
-> Or, how do young people get their professional skills?
I'll be happy to read from you:)