Working in Germany
Am I allowed to work and how much?
There are labour laws that precisely stipulate how many hours students are allowed to work. The regulations vary according to where the students come from. If you are from a non- European country you are permitted to work only 120 full or 240 half days a year. This also includes voluntary work placements. If you wish to work more, you need a permit from the "Agentur für Arbeit" (Federal Employment Agency) and the foreigners' authorities.
Please note: The labour laws pertaining to international students are very restrictive, and if you break them, you risk being expelled from the country.
How can I find a job?
For many students in Germany, it's quite normal to work part-time while studying. As an international student, you are also allowed to work in Germany. However, certain rules do apply.
In Germany it is very common that companies post job vacancies on their own websites. Therefore, you should have a look at websites of the companies which you are interested in. Some examples of large companies located in Darmstadt are for example: Merck, Telekom, Software AG, Döhler and Evonik.
Besides that you can also check the following general job portals:
- The job Portal of the h_da:
- The job portal of the faculty of economics and business administration
- The job portal of the local job centre (Agentur für Arbeit):
- Stepstone is an online job portal which is specialized in skilled workers and executives:
- online job portal, similar to Stepstone:
- The job portal of the local newspaper “Darmstädter Echo”
- The job portal of the local newspaper “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung”
Do I need to learn German to work in Germany?
The number of job openings is very limited if you do not speak German. Make the most of the opportunity to take a language course while studying for your Master's degree. Of course, you can do an entire degree at a German university in English and fellow students might not have a problem answering you with a bit more than a "yes" or a "no". But for personal contact with future colleagues, it is definitely advisable to have a command of the German language.
Another possibility for preparing German is the website of the Deutsche Welle. The language courses are designed as e- learning courses at the computer with short videos, audio courses or podcasts, or with texts and worksheets you can print out. Check the following website: http://www.dw.de/learn-german/german-courses/s-2547
What are the job opportunities after my studies?
You should start planning your career in Germany while still studying for your Master's degree. With a degree from a German university, numerous job opportunities are available to you as an international graduate on the German job market. This information will help you successfully launch your career.
Students from non-EU countries are allowed to remain in Germany for the purpose of looking for employment for a maximum of 18 months after graduating. These 18 months pass quicker than you think, so it's important to start job hunting during the final semester of your Master's degree, or at the latest four months before finishing your studies. As a member of a team of careers advisers specialising in academic professions, she has spent the last 30 years helping international graduates gain a foothold in the German employment market.
While looking for full-time permanent employment, you are allowed to work as much as you like. According to a new Right of Residence regulation, there are no longer any time restrictions on working during the job search phase.
Advice in summary
- Start looking for a job early on, at the latest four months before you finish studying!
- Carry out a self-analysis!
- Don't restrict your search too much!
- Make use of the services offered by your university!
- Take advantage of career fairs and the services offered by employment agencies!
- By now you should be proficient in German! Take German language courses while studying!
For further information please have a look at: http://www.make-it-in-germany.com/en/