Financing your internship in Germany

Payment by the Employer

Since 1 January 2015, a new law guarantees even interns a minimum wage of 8.50 EUR / hour. This general rule does not apply for students who intern for up to three months as part of their respective study program or as orientation training. It is not yet clear how the new law will change the proven practice of internship in Germany. So far, the compensation for an internship in Germany varies between 0 and 800 EUR / month depending on the duration, the type and the subject of the respective internship. Internships up to 6 weeks are usually unpaid as long as the purpose of training and/or orientation is clearly seen. The training and/or orientation objectives should be agreed by contract. Unpaid internships of more than 6 weeks are generally viewed critically.

Other Sources/Public or Private Funding

While there are many relatively generous scholarships for studying in Germany, the financing of an internship in Germany is a rather difficult thing. The promotion of internships is not among the core objectives of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), but is offered as part of several of the 212 programs (31/12/2014). For more details see its scholarship database: https://www.daad.de/deutschland/stipendium/datenbank/en/21148-scholarship-database/

A proven source for funding an internships the International Association for the Exchange of Students for Technical Experience IAESTE – but for students of engineering, natural sciences, agriculture and forestry only. Applications for IAESTE funding have to be submitted at the IAESTE national committee of the country where the student is currently enrolled. The German national committee (located at DAAD) and the regional IAESTE offices will provide further support. For more details see www.iaeste.de and your national IAESTE website.

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