Graduates from certain EU member states and several other nationalities have the opportunity to receive an 18-month visa extension directly after degree completion. In this time period, you can apply for jobs within the range of your degree of study. Please note, that in order to receive this visa extension you will need to prove that you have been applying for positions and that you are financially secure. During this 18-month period you are also allowed to have side jobs.
We recommend that you begin with your job search as early as possible. We suggest that you start at least 6 months before you complete your German degree. (Please note, when applicable, your 18-month visa extension begins the day your last test results are posted). Career fairs and professional events are typically held only once a year. So make sure to gather information about relevant events as early as possible.
TU Dortmund University also offers several events that can help with your transition from university to professional life. For example, the career fairs, which are open to the public, offer the opportunity to get to know different companies, ask about internship opportunities and maybe even personally hand in your application. We suggest that you prepare in advance by researching the participating companies, their job openings and hiring requirements to create a lasting impression. And do not forget your current CV and maybe even a brief cover letter that you could leave there.
The online portal “Stellenwerk” lists job offers for student. On a yearly basis, TU Dortmund University hosts an International Career Fair, the “Internationale Karrieremesse”. This event is arranged specifically for international students (link to German webpage)! The REALITY is a job fair for those in the Information Technology sector (link to German webpage). The Konaktiva is a student run job fair held at TU Dortmund University (link to German webpage). The AAR (Autonomes AusländerInnenReferat) also offers several different Career Seminars in English.
To increase your chances of success throughout your application process we suggest that you be aware of the “do’s” and “don’ts” in Germany. We recommend that you read up-to-date literature about the German application process and take advantage of advising sessions. Additionally, you should be fully versed in the history, facts and figures about the company to which you are applying. It is important that your application does not appear to be a “standard application”. Instead, applications should be adapted and personalized for each job opening/company. Lastly, please be sure to double-check which documents are required for your application as the requirements often vary.
German language skills are often the key to a successful application and are often required of job applicants. Use the time during your studies not only to improve your academic and scientific skills, but also to continually improve your language skills, e.g. through language courses, or by joining a club on campus or even have a side job (if your visa allows it).
If you are interested in being an entrepreneur and starting your own company there are several different outlets of support resources available.
The Federal Employment Agency’s Hochschulteam offers counseling for all students. The website Europass has tips on how to best structure your résumé/CV. TU Dortmund University offers an internship support for German and English internship applications. Through the Alumniportal Deutschland, you can stay informed about job openings specifically for international students. This website is also linked to the DAAD, which has additional tips and links. To gather more information about the offered language courses, we encourage you to visit the language department’s website directly: Zentrum für HochschulBildung (ZHB) – Bereich Fremdsprachen. The program EXIST supported by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) is available for those seeking advice for start-ups in the sectors technology and intellectual property rights. The Center for Entrepreneurship & Transfer (CET) is an organized group that helps support students, graduates, researchers, faculty and staff at TU Dortmund University with their business endeavors.
It is important that you are well-informed about German business culture, especially as it could be much different than the one in your home country. Research the expectations and responsibilities that are commonly required in your career field. These differences should be clear to you before you begin your job search, as otherwise misunderstandings may arise.
We suggest that you look for answers to the following questions:
- How does the organization structure its employees?
- What type of hierarchy do they use?
- How is internal communication structured?
- Which perspectives and values does the company consider significant?
German companies place a high value on job-applicable knowledge and experience. Like in many other countries, grades and job experience are always positive for your application. However, job experience is not limited to "standard jobs", as internships, research projects, work-study jobs and a Bachelor's/Master's thesis can also be considered specialized experience.
Even after you have graduated from TU Dortmund University the university still has endless resources to offer to you. We encourage you to visit our International Alumni Website and become part of international network. This network is open to students who have completed a degree, studied abroad or been part of a research team at TU Dortmund University.
The Association of Friends of TU Dortmund University (Gesellschaft der Freunde der TU Dortmund e.V. in German) also provides an extensive network of contacts that bridge the university and business field.
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Location & approach
The campus of TU Dortmund University is located close to interstate junction Dortmund West, where the Sauerlandlinie A 45 (Frankfurt-Dortmund) crosses the Ruhrschnellweg B 1 / A 40. The best interstate exit to take from A 45 is "Dortmund-Eichlinghofen" (closer to Campus Süd), and from B 1 / A 40 "Dortmund-Dorstfeld" (closer to Campus Nord). Signs for the university are located at both exits. Also, there is a new exit before you pass over the B 1-bridge leading into Dortmund.
To get from Campus Nord to Campus Süd by car, there is the connection via Vogelpothsweg/Baroper Straße. We recommend you leave your car on one of the parking lots at Campus Nord and use the H-Bahn (suspended monorail system), which conveniently connects the two campuses.
TU Dortmund University has its own train station ("Dortmund Universität"). From there, suburban trains (S-Bahn) leave for Dortmund main station ("Dortmund Hauptbahnhof") and Düsseldorf main station via the "Düsseldorf Airport Train Station" (take S-Bahn number 1, which leaves every 20 or 30 minutes). The university is easily reached from Bochum, Essen, Mülheim an der Ruhr and Duisburg.
You can also take the bus or subway train from Dortmund city to the university: From Dortmund main station, you can take any train bound for the Station "Stadtgarten", usually lines U41, U45, U 47 and U49. At "Stadtgarten" you switch trains and get on line U42 towards "Hombruch". Look out for the Station "An der Palmweide". From the bus stop just across the road, busses bound for TU Dortmund University leave every ten minutes (445, 447 and 462). Another option is to take the subway routes U41, U45, U47 and U49 from Dortmund main station to the stop "Dortmund Kampstraße". From there, take U43 or U44 to the stop "Dortmund Wittener Straße". Switch to bus line 447 and get off at "Dortmund Universität S".
The AirportExpress is a fast and convenient means of transport from Dortmund Airport (DTM) to Dortmund Central Station, taking you there in little more than 20 minutes. From Dortmund Central Station, you can continue to the university campus by interurban railway (S-Bahn). A larger range of international flight connections is offered at Düsseldorf Airport (DUS), which is about 60 kilometres away and can be directly reached by S-Bahn from the university station.
The H-Bahn is one of the hallmarks of TU Dortmund University. There are two stations on Campus Nord. One ("Dortmund Universität S") is directly located at the suburban train stop, which connects the university directly with the city of Dortmund and the rest of the Ruhr Area. Also from this station, there are connections to the "Technologiepark" and (via Campus Süd) Eichlinghofen. The other station is located at the dining hall at Campus Nord and offers a direct connection to Campus Süd every five minutes.