Once you get your  admission for Masters in Germany and reach here you will have to get started searching for  your internships and thesis. Things you must know before we get started :

  1. Companies will never approach you in Germany. You will have to go company’s website and check in their career portal and apply. But the positive thing is , they will respond to your application.
  2. When you’re looking for internship there are two types of internship one is voluntary internship (In German Freiwillig praktikum) and the other is compulsory internship (In German Pflichtpraktikum).Compulsory internship  is part of your course work. Most of the masters programs have only voluntary internship.
  3. Your German Langauage Certificate does not matter :You do not need to show any proof that you have done A1 or A2 level etc. But make sure while writing a Resume and cover letter , write it with the German knowledge you possess.

My experiences and some tips:

First select the field in which you want to start your internship .

Your internship and project will decide your thesis and Job.

Then start looking for the companies who are working in your domain and the requirements.

Once on doing these ground start preparing your Resume (In German Lebenslauf ) and Cover Letter (In German Anschreiben ).

Top 3 Things to take care of while preparing your resume:

  1. First write your resume in English, then start writing in German. Do not convert using google translate or ask your German friend to translate. If you do so you are clearly giving  proof to the firm that you do not having an idea about the language.
  2. While preparing for the resume be clear –  on which side of the resume you want the photo i.e on right or left side. Once you decide go to a proper professional photographer and get your photo done. In German it is called Bewerbungs bild. It costs 30-40 euros here, but it is worth it. Why? –  because from your photo the recruiting people will figure out how friendly , confident and positive you are.                                                                                         Example for  Photo on Left Side of Resume                                                                                     Example for  Photo on Right Side of Resume
  3. Follow a  chronological order while preparing your resume , start with personal information, studies , project/ work experience, software you know etc, at the end on left side place, date, signature.(Hint :  Just write the relevant project / work experience applicable to the field you wish to apply) . This should be within two pages. To get more clear ideas the university library will have lot of books on how to prepare good resume, cover letter etc. If you are a student of The Languedge Kindly bring your German B1 level part 1 book, lesson 3 or 4 will clearly describe it to you.

Top things to Note while preparing your cover letter:

  1. Once you have finalised the field you would like to start your internship in, the next step is   to prepare your cover letter in German.
  2. Start the cover letter with from , to (Try to get the exact name of the Person to whom you are addressing the letter), the post name and the post number.
  3. Divide your cover letter into 3 to 4 paragraphs . First paragraph should be maximum 4 lines. It should  describe what you are searching for, e.g Internship/ thesis  and  about the company .  (Hint: While writing about the company just write about the companies current project aligning with your area of interest.) 
  4. The second paragraph should describe your bachelor and  masters studies with the area of interest. (Maximum 4 lines)
  5. In the Third paragraph , write exactly what you have done .E.g. explaining the software’s , algorithms and the allied subjects (Maximum 8 lines). In the last paragraph just say I am waiting for positive reply (In German Über eine Einladung zu einem persönlichen Gespräch würde ich mich sehr freuen.)
  6. So your Cover letter must be maximum 16-17 lines. Write it to the point, be neat and clear.
  7. For every post you apply change the cover letter.

After preparing your resume and cover letter in German, give it for proof reading , Give to your German friends, college seniors , German teacher, college Librarian and career service department in your college. To prepare a good resume and cover letter, It might take 2 to 3 weeks. Once on doing it start applying in the company website in their career portal. 

Apart from company websites, every year in almost all states in Germany there will be job fairs in the month  of April and May where about 100 companies participate. If you have finished the above mentioned process , a Job Fair is a good opportunity where you could speak with the company human resources, team leaders, and project leaders directly. If they like your profile they will ask for your resume and give their personal card . So within two weeks you will have an interview call. Also , you will get more contacts which will be helpful when your addressing in cover letter (One tip that I followed in my cover letter is to mention the contact I met at the Job fair. This gives a slight edge and speeds up your application process.( Hint: While attending Job Fair carry 5 to 10 Resume copies with you)

More Tips for you – besides your Resume and Cover Letter

  1. Start applying for your internship / thesis 3 to 4 months earlier from your start date.
  2. Normally it takes 3 weeks to get a reply for your application.
  3. Holidays are usually  during winter -December to January and during summer -from July to August. So during these days it might minimum 6 weeks to get a reply.
  4. You will have to apply to 40-50 companies at least . Another sign-  If you are getting rejections from more than 10 companies , change the cover letter , resume format and apply again.
  5. Once you are selected in the interview , still apply for the internship until you get the contract and join the firm. From my personal experience I got selected in a company, got my contract after two days I got a E-mail stating the project is cancelled, so we cannot offer you internship. These are very common situations.
  6. Few companies will send auto rejection For E.g A company raised a new post around 5 o clock in the evening in their career portal . I applied for the same post in the same company around 8 o clock in the night . Early morning 3 o clock I got a rejection stating that we have selected a new candidate.Do not worry about these things.

Few tips for Interview for my experience:

  1. If you are staying with Germans , try to get a mock interview in German – with your landlord, WG mates etc . It will  increase your level of confidence .
  2. When you get a call for an Interview – Never ask to have  the interview in English. Try to give it in German , even if your German is not that commendable. If you try it in German it shows your interest to learn which is a positive trait. The recruiters also understand that, It is difficult to master a language in a year. So do not worry about the language.
  3. Punctuality is a MUST. Reach 20 minutes early and If your interview is in another city make sure , you are a day  earlier. Your travel cost and the accommodation will be reimbursed by the company.
  4. Be thorough with the things you have written in your resume.
  5. The Interview process will usually not be that tough . It will be more like a conversation between two people at a coffee shop. You will know  who your interviewer is , So you can look at his profile in LinkedIn or Xing to have a clear idea in which department you will be working.

Tips for your Thesis (Credits : Ankur / Chandrasekar)

  1. If you are planning to do your thesis in a company –  there is a high chance of getting in if a professor recommends you to the company .
  2. In TU’s  –  If your planning to do in the company , they will check if your thesis topic  will help with company’s research . If not they will not guide / supervise your thesis .
  3. If you are planning to do your  thesis at the University , – the professor usually will check your grades, if  have you taken any of his subjects , then gives you the topic .
  4. Some companies and professors  will want to you to register the thesis at the university , company at the beginning. Then you will have  to finish within 6 months. Some are flexible , where you could register your thesis after 2 or 3 months from your start date. The catch behind this is , in case if you don’t find the job with in the thesis  period and you have submitted your thesis and ex-matriculated from the university your student visa changes to job-seeker visa.

With all these experiences I was able to get an internship and thesis. My interviews where completely in German and was able to face it confidently . In every interview my German was appreciated . I would like to thank Mathangi Mam for it and helping me at all times.

Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.

Viel Erfolg , Viel Spass

Anoop  is currently interning at BFFT which is a part of the EDAG group.

His role is that of functional developer for autonomous driving.