Behind Germany’s rapid rise as a study destination of choice is a benevolent post-study
work offer and a tuition-free environment. As Viggo Stacey discovers, combine this with
quality and practical education, and you have a winning proposition.
ISSUE #24 | THE PIE REVIEW | 11
GERMANY IS VERY much a country of
thinkers – Schiller, Goethe, Guttenberg, Gottlieb
Daimler – and its universities are making waves
in research output. And this point is not overlooked by the
German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), which is
tasked with promoting the country as a study destination.
‘Study in Germany – Land of Ideas’ is the name of its glo-bal
campaign. DAAD’s pro-active promotion is one reason
for Germany’s exponential growth of international student
numbers over the past decade. The country is forecast to hit
393,579 international students in 2019’s intake – almost a 60
per cent increase over the previous decade.
Beyond effective branding and marketing, Germany’s
quality of research and education, its lack of tuition fees,
relatively low living costs, and safe, politically stable position
in the heart of Europe – and in the centre of the Schengen
area – are other reasons for its successful status, combined
with access to post-study work opportunities.
Access to work
The option of staying on after studies is a major draw for
many students. “It’s finding a promising future in Germany
and, in that respect, Germany is very attractive because the
economy is doing really well,” says Martin Bickl, chair of the
German Association for International Education (DAIA).
The country offers a post-study work program, where
an 18-month residence permit gives non-EU students
time after graduation to find work. DAAD recognises the
importance of working opportunities in Germany: “Recent
legal changes for non-EU students have eased searching for
a job in Germany during or after graduation,” Anja Schnabel,
responsible for DAAD’s ‘Study in Germany – Land of Ideas’
campaign, tells The PIE Review. “One-quarter of internatio-nal
students would like to find a job in Germany, and one-fifth
wants to continue academic studies here,” she adds.
In addition, non-EU students can work for 120 full, or
240 half days, per year while studying. EU students have
no limits but pay health insurance and other fees if working
for more than 20 hours per week. Dual study programs also
provide extra opportunities for practically-minded students.
Dual study programs give students time to work at the
same time as studying, and are a complementary model to
traditional universities, explains a spokesperson from the
Baden-Württemberg Cooperative State University, Dual
Higher Education’s largest provider and the only university
entirely focused on Dual Education.
PHOTO: FREIBURG UNIVERSITY