Fit for the German Job Market

iStart Career Program for International Students

Are you thinking about your career plans once your studies are done? Are you keen to find an internship or job in Germany while you are studying? Would you like to start building your network of fellow international students and graduates that may prove invaluable down the road? — With our iStart project, we would like to help you along this journey.

The Program

Preparing to Get on the Career Ladder

The University of Bonn offers the iStart career program for international students, including those with a refugee background, as part of the DAAD’s “NRWege Leuchttürme” grant program.

iStart teaches participants tangible knowledge and valuable skills that will enable them to write successful applications for jobs in Germany. The program is geared toward giving you a successful career path both during and after your studies and thus making it easier for you to enter the job market. To this end, the iStart team works closely with employers and alumni.

Participation in the program is free. The program is conducted in English.

All international students can access the following services to help them make their own preparations for their future career:

  • Selected events
  • Correction of grammatical errors in application documents written in German or English
  • iStart podcasts and explanatory videos to help with your career planning
  • Lists of current vacancies and useful information

Go online22 to register for events and make use of services.

Our Intensive Career Program

Alongside the services that are available to students at any time to help them make their own preparations, we also organize an intensive career program every semester, which is made up of three consecutive blocks:

  • Orientation: in this block, you will learn about the German job market and how to create your own career profile in group and individual coaching sessions.
  • Networking: meet international university graduates and local companies and make valuable contacts for getting on the career ladder further down the line.
  • Application:  this block will teach you how to apply for jobs. You will be able to get your application documents reviewed in a one-to-one coaching session.

We have also arranged a special bonus for active participants: a professional photoshoot for your application photos!


Criteria and Process

You will be able to participate in our intensive career program if you:

  • Study at the University of Bonn
  • Come from outside Germany

Please note that only a limited number of spots are available. Application for the winter semester 2021/22 is open until October 10, 2021.

Missed the Deadline?

Has the deadline already passed?  Make use of the services that are available to students at any time to help them make their own preparations, as these run independently of the intensive career program. A new round of the program will begin next semester.

You can also contact the Career Center at the University of Bonn. The Career Center supports the University of Bonn’s students in the transition from their studies to their professional career. Its offerings range from seminars on career planning and application training to reviews of application documents and a surgery as well as a variety of career planning events.

For Companies, Institutions and Organizations

Interested in taking on international staff and keen to work together with iStart? There are two options: via our internship placement program and our corporate breakfast-and-tour program. Each offers an unparalleled opportunity to speak directly to future graduates of the University of Bonn, drawing on our help as organizers who maintain constant contact with both you and the students.

Internship Placement

You can use our network to find suitable interns for your organization:

  • We will add your internship listing to our internship and volunteer position database.
  • Based on the criteria you specify, we will identify the right candidate from the applications we receive.
  • You in turn will be presented with an intern you can trust to do the job right. Should the candidate not fit for whatever reason, we will offer alternatives.
  • Throughout the internship, we will serve as a contact for both you and our intern.

Company Tours

Our corporate breakfast-and-tour program gives you the chance to make yourself known to future graduates – and hence potential employees – in a targeted way.

At the same time, the events are designed to allow our international students to learn more about individual companies and begin building a network of contacts in the world of work. You are thus giving the students the opportunity to look “behind the scenes” and learn more about various fields of activity and what they need in order to work at your company.

Interested? Feel free to contact Kristina Khrul at any time for more information.

Online Fair "Pathfinder: Volunteering & Career"

The virtual career fair is initiated by iStart and sponsored by DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service), and allows international students and alumnae of the University of Bonn to get to know different volunteering organisations and employers. Over two days, and in more than 40 exhibitors' presentations in English and German, participants will learn about options for participation and career entry. Please find the full fair program here.

The online fair takes place on 9 and 10 November. Please use following Evencode for the registration: PVC21.

For Alumni

Are you a former international student at the University of Bonn? Take part as a speaker, a mentor or simply an observer at our alumni networking meetings.

For international alumni and students, these offer a valuable opportunity to share insights about working or looking for employment in Germany. As an alumnus or alumna, you will be able to tell the students more about your personal journey into the world of work. There will also be the opportunity for networking between alumni and students, allowing you as a former student to keep in touch with the University of Bonn while also helping the current intake find a job.

If you are interested in taking part, you can contact us at any time to register or find out more. You can also do some networking via the “International Alumni Exchange” group at the University of Bonn. There will be also produced a video with international graduates.


Avatar Khrul

Kristina Khrul

iStart Career Program


Poppelsdorfer Allee 53

53115 Bonn (Germany)

+49 228 73-2419

Office Hours

  • Mondays (on site)
    12:00 - 01:00 pm
  • Wednesdays (via Zoom)
    12:00 - 01:00 pm
  • by appointment

© …

This project is supported by the DAAD with funding from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the Ministry of Culture and Science of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

Also see

Career Center at the University of Bonn

The Career Center supports the University of Bonn’s students in the transition from their studies to their professional career.

IAESTE specialist internships abroad

The local IAESTE committee arranges internships outside Germany and looks after international interns in Bonn.

Learn more77820

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