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Why is Germany the best destination to study abroad?

Updated: May 14, 2020

Is it really?

Most of the people usually aim for the US and UK universities, due to the glamour attached to those Ivy League brands. Not to forget the ease of language. Arun has worked with some of Ivy League pass outs and it can be a hit or miss for your career.

Coming to Germany, following are the factors to consider. Whether these make Germany the best destination to study is one’s own decision.

  • Post qualification visa: Upon graduation, non EU students are entitled to stay in Germany and look for a job (if they dont already have one) for 18 months. This, per CDG's knowledge and student interaction, is the one of the longest duration amongst the top education destination countries.

Of course such students are not restricted to look for a job in Germany alone. If they can secure a job offer from France, Netherlands or any other EU country, they can apply for the respective country’s work permit.

Arun is part of a global Facebook Group of ~16,000 STEM professionals, most of whom are Phd based in US. The most prominent topic of discussion for such an intellectual group is about US Visa.

Interesting read: How is Germany for an MBA?

  • Understated colleges: Germany is not great at marketing itself. Which is in life with their philosophy that the quality of the work/product should speak for itself.

  1. The TU (Technical Universities): are the key driver of skilled and efficient workforce to the engineering companies. The companies on their part have a rigorous training programs to develop these freshers further in their roles.

  2. Masters institutes: With stellar alumni and high quality professors, some of the best masters courses can be done at Mannheim Business School, ESMT, WHU and ESCP. All of these have deep industry connections (in DACH region) and invite professionals for guest lectures.

How they fair when it comes to fees: TU are virtually free, masters courses at above mentioned colleges costs half to one third of their peers in US and UK.

  • PhDs : Europe is the real hub of scientific research, more so due to the federal government support. Research in life sciences is generally path breaking. Germany tries to halt U.S. interest in firm working on coronavirus vaccine. The research focused on the UN sustainable development goals (SDGs) are getting increasing support from the government. A lot of this research flows into startups trying to harness the intellectual breakthroughs to benefit mass markets. Generally, PhD can be completed within 4–6years, which is relatively quick than other popular destinations. There is no requirement of being a Research Assistant, which saves 2 years of PhD.

We are aware of professors running their own labs, who are actively consulting such startups to make their research available to the needful.

  • Lower fees of education: Please note that this should not be the only criteria for selecting an education destination or course. Germany values education as a fundamental right, hence its not charged as a business. Quiet a few universities offer almost free education, even to non German students. Masters courses are relatively cheaper than other top study destinations.

  • ISA (Income share agreements): CDG recently came across this concept. The good quality private universities are adopting ISA to help provide quality education to students, irrespective of their financial background. The colleges work with an external company and charge students for the fees once they pass out and start earning.

  • The students do not pay if they do not earn a minimum salary threshold,

  • the tenure of repayment is defined at the time of admission,

  • the maximum payment amount is capped,

  • a % of amount repaid by the student every year is tax deductible,

  • the college benefits with their focus on quality rather than quantity of the students,

  • the students do not begin their life and career with a 100k debt on their head with questionable visa/job prospects.

CDG is not aware if this arrangement is adopted in other study destination countries. Maybe readers from those countries can share their knowledge in the comments.

NOTE: A lot of private business schools are coming up in Germany offering generic and “buzzword” courses while charging high fees. Beware of such colleges. Ways to identify them:

  • they work with “partners” to recruit students, based in Germany or in your home country.

  • the institute and partners will make claims about “free education”, “18 months visa”, “easy PR” and NOT talk about their alumni, job prospects, industry networks or career services for students,

  • they market the concept of “Free education” in Germany to lure students,

  • they barely have any industry network or quality alumni network,

  • the students are all international and no Germans,

  • class composition is students from one country or specific countries (India, China, South East Asia, Latin America),

  • the medium of studies is English, another tactic used to lure students to help them over come the language hump,

  • some of them will make outrageous claims. One institute informed a student in India - “his starting salary will be 150,000 Euros after a Master in Marketing course”.

Its upto you now to decide if Germany is an ideal study destination. If you are student, make this decision very carefully and with enough research.

It always helps to have a mentor, who has worked and lived in Germany for some of the best brands. For personal consultation with Arun Mahajan, book a time with him.

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