Foreign students at German universities are a group with high potential. In addition to their professional qualifications, they are usually already familiar with the cultural side of Germany as well as the language. Moreover, you can save time when recruiting foreign students because they are already inside the country.
Employment of foreign students during their studies
Foreign students can already be employed as student workers during their studies. Students from the EU, the EEA and Switzerland are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week during the lecture period, just like German students. During the semester break, they can work without any restrictions.
Students from third countries who have a residence permit for the purpose of studying (Section 16b of the German Residence Act – AufenthG) may be employed for 120 full days or 240 half days per year without the approval of the BA.
In addition, foreign students from third countries can be employed even before completing their studies (in accordance with Section 16b (4) of the German Residence Act – AufenthG). The following options are available:
- Full-time employment as a professional (Section 18a; 18b of the German Residence Act – AufenthG) if the acquired knowledge and skills enable them to do so.
- Instead of studying, it is possible to take up qualified vocational training. Before taking up the training position, the foreign student must apply for a residence permit to take up vocational training at the competent authority.
Employment after successful completion of studies in Germany
Following their studies in Germany, foreign graduates can immediately take up employment that matches their qualifications. In order to look for a job in Germany, they will usually receive a residence permit valid for up to 18 months.
The "How can I recruit a qualified professional from abroad? What employers need to know" guide briefly explains all legal provisions concerning the employment of skilled workers from abroad.