The AYF program is proud to offer you the opportunity to work as an intern during your second term in Freiburg (Sommersemester). The Internship Program gives you a chance to gain work experience, improve your German, and get to know German work culture first hand – all while earning academic credit!
Internships are part time and usually unpaid. You will be expected to commit to 10-12 hours per week for 10-12 weeks. While an intern, you will continue to be enrolled in classes. The internship is combined with an academic component, a seminar led by the Academic Director. You earn 3 credits for successfully completing the internship and the seminar; in effect, the internship can replace one course during the summer term.
The Internship Seminar responds flexibly to the particular internship placements held by students during a given summer semester by integrating your experiences into class discussions and presentations. Intercultural issues, business communication and gender issues in the workplace provide additional focal points for class discussions.
If you are interested in gaining practical work experience during your time in Germany, the summer semester Internship Program may be right for you!
„The internship program is a wonderful aspect of AYF. By completing the program you will accomplish career goals you didn’t think you had; and you’ll definitely improve your German and your skill set”. – Tiann Nelson-Luck
How does it work?
We will assist you in locating and securing an internship position with a host company or organization in or near Freiburg, but you are not limited to placements suggested by AYF. You are, on the contrary, encouraged to take the initiative and search for potential placements on your own. Host companies or organizations will determine specific tasks and responsibilities. German language skills as well as prior work experience play an important role in shaping the internship experience, as does your personality, active engagement and intercultural awareness.
This selective program is open to about 10 AYF students. The application and placement process takes place from October to January. You will be asked to submit an application by November 1, pay a program fee of 200 Euros, and sign an agreement.
Previous interns have worked at an impressive array of organizations or host companies in and around Freiburg, ranging from government agencies to publishing houses, businesses, environmental organizations, and schools, among other institutions. Here you can find out more about possible placements and previous AYF students’ experiences.
„My experience at Alumni Freiburg was good training, an example of a typical German office and it provided good experience in event management. After finishing college, I want to work for a German company in the U.S. This internship has, I think, brought me one step closer to that career goal.” – David Stohrer
„The internship at AMICA was simply wonderful; not only because I learned so much but because I felt driven to learn even more on my own. Now I know much more about the situation in our project areas, especially about the situation of women. I also learned a lot about NGOs, how they work – or don’t work. For me it was very easy to connect my experience at AMICA with my studies.” – Sonya Kotov
„I felt very comfortable at the ABI. My work tasks were somewhat unstructured and irregular. But I always stepped in when I felt my assistance was needed, often without having been asked. And that was a good thing! Having a positive attitude is always important when you want to learn something new and make a good impression. Overall I was just delighted with my internship.” – Tessa Coggio
„What I enjoyed most were the ‘Water Flea’ units in the ‘Blue Classroom’ directly in a brook during which students learn to find small aquatic animals or to understand the chemistry of a brook. It was a ‘classroom’ at a brook, a kind of child care combined with environmental education.” – Neil Matouka
„To sum it up, I would say the internship was valuable. Above all, I learned a lot about myself during the internship. I especially liked working not only with Germans but in a multicultural environment.” – Robert Wareck
„The Carl-Schurz-Haus is not your typical German work environment, but I still learned a lot about how Germans get things done. My three months at the Carl-Schurz-Haus gave me invaluable experience. I learned a lot about myself and about the opportunities I have in life.” – Maddie Kaiser
"My internship at Schlossbergrestaurant Dattler has a direct connection to my future career because I want to study at a Culinary Institute after finishing my B.A. at the University of Michigan. I like to cook. I also like to bake, and I think that my future is in gastronomy. I can practice my German every day, and my colleagues are very nice and patient with my language problems. All in all I really like my internship.” – Alyson Schramm.Drawing on experience from the internship, Alyson is now managing her own establishment, Schramm’s Meadery, in Ferndale, Michigan.
"The internship with fesa e.V. allowed me to explore a field that proved exciting and ever-changing. I gained experience in journalism by contributing an article to fesa’s quarterly magazine and acquired many useful contacts for sustainability in both Germany and America through my research." – Shelby ClairHere you can read Shelby’s article on mobility in Madison and Freiburg.
“This is a good internship for anyone interested in environmental policy issues, international relations, translation, or politics in local administration. Working in an office setting in the Rathaus was pretty cool, and it was a nice atmosphere in the team, but getting to join international groups of environmental experts / politicians was super interesting as well. Plus, there were mind-blowing coffee breaks every Wednesday.” – Erica Deming
“My internship has taught me a lot about myself: not only have I discovered a passion for local politics, but I have also developed a confidence in my ability to work independently, to ask for clarification two or three or four times when I don’t understand something, and to successfully conduct day-to-day business in a language that is not my native tongue.“ – Virginia McCalmont
“Among the many beautiful and authentic places in Freiburg, Greiffenegg Schössle is easily one of the most refined. I loved working with Frau Biere, Manuela, Patrick, Stefan and Steffi. I will forever be grateful for their patience and good humor. I highly recommend working at Greiffenegg to those ready to work hard as a committed team member. Viel Erfolg!” – Lizzie Kunze
“Looking back at my Academic Year in Freiburg, my internship was by far one of the most rewarding experiences. What I learned goes far beyond anything culinary or gastronomy related. Greiffenegg Schlössle allowed me to discover my true passion for language and for learning. I have been able to take all that I learned at my internship and transfer it to a professional career teaching English to immigrants and refugees at nonprofits and tech colleges in addition to my most recent job teaching international college students at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.” – Ryan Peterson
"My internship at the Herder Verlag was a great and unique opportunity to experience German professional life. My colleagues were very helpful and friendly, and gave me a wider network of people to interact with both inside and outside the office. I'm extremely grateful to both AYF and Herder for making this opportunity possible.” – Nick Monaco
“HighQ is just a fantastic place to work. I was given a task, the relevance was explained, and I was given more than everything I needed to finish the job. At the end of the internship I had a fully functional program I had written from scratch to be implemented in highQ’s biggest product, MyTraQ. I improved both my German and Java, learned Android programming and the use of NFC technology, made several friends, and was instantly included in the company, whether at lunch or work parties.” – Nils Hjortnaes
“I just wanted to take a moment to thank you, not just for all the amazing work you did for AYF during my time there, but specifically for pushing me to apply for the ICLEI internship. It was out of my comfort zone and I was feeling hesitant about applying. But now in my MPA program, the perspective it has given me is invaluable. I wouldn't be where I am today if it weren't for you. And for that I'm incredibly thankful.” – Griffin Bouwens
„As an intern at the Jazz- & Rock-Schule, I have been making small videos for the home page. I’m very interested in music and film, and that’s why this is the ideal internship for me. On Sunday evening, I’ll be filming the final project concert of the guest students from Berklee College in Boston. I’m excited about it – they are really good musicians.” – Alexander Lindtvedt
„By working at the LpB, I was able clearly to see cultural differences in the way business is conducted and to learn about a topic I love, politics. I learned a lot about what kind of worker I am and how I approach meetings, projects, and a different work atmosphere. Much of what I learned I can take back to the USA and use in my future employment. The LpB internship gave me a new sense of initiative, team work and improved German language abilities.” – Tiann Nelson-Luck
“My internship at the Militärarchiv gave me a unique perspective into archival work and the challenges that preserving historical materials presents. As a federal intern, I learned a lot about the differences between the German and American administration systems. It definitely helped me improve my confidence in speaking German in an office setting, and I even had the incredible opportunity to do research on my own family.” – Sascha Glaeser
“My internship with the Social Psychology and Methodology research department allowed me to develop academically and professionally. As a research assistant I gained an inside look into a research department at a foreign university. I enjoyed working with and getting to know German students from various academic backgrounds and assisting the psychology staff. I also gained experience working in an office setting using my German language skills. My internship was an integral part of my experience abroad, and I would recommend it to anyone participating in AYF.” – Sadie Voet
„My internship consisted of attending meetings and conferences, observing different departments and translating brochures from German into English. I don’t know what kind of career I want to pursue later. But this internship / learning experience challenged me to develop my analytic and communicative competences. And I’ll be able to use these in any future job.” – Gary Krautkramer
"My experience at St. Ursula Gymnasium was very interesting. I went into the school internship without any teaching abilities, and three months later I have not only acquired new skills but a new self confidence. This self confidence will stay with me my whole life. Now I know that I can be successful in all situations. I am ready for the future!” – Alexandra Trecha