WHY GO ABROAD?

Studying abroad often means a huge boost to your academic and personal development. The Faculty of Humanities is therefore happy to help you take part in study activities abroad. The period and purpose of your stay abroad may vary. Think about taking courses at a university abroad via an exchange, find an internship abroad, or participate in a summerschool. Below you can read more about the different possibilities.

EXCHANGE

Utrecht University collaborates with universities worldwide. The faculties have exchange agreements for specific areas of study, while university-wide agreements are open to students from all faculties (unless stated otherwise). During your exchange, you remain enrolled at Utrecht University and you do not have to pay tuition fees at the university abroad.

The International Office offers all the help you need in preparing for an exchange abroad. 

Depending on your destination, you will be guided by the International Office Humanities or the University-wide International Office.

Internship Abroad

Even if you live in the Netherlands as an international student, it can be interesting and useful to do an internship in another country. Moreover, the working language of most organisations in the Netherlands is Dutch. An internship abroad is therefore a good choice if you do not speak Dutch.

  • Preparation time: depending on your citizenship, doing an internship abroad usually takes more time to prepare than an internship in the Netherlands. Especially if you are going to a country outside the EU. It is therefore wise to start your orientation early, ideally about a year in advance.
  • Personal commitment: one of the aspects that make an internship so educational is the fact that you have to do a lot yourself. Arranging an internship abroad requires even more of your own initiative and perseverance than arranging one in the Netherlands or your home country. Like studying abroad, this can be very rewarding: you experience daily life in another country, you learn more about the culture of the country and (in many cases) the language, and you have much more contact with the local population than when studying abroad. Moreover, it provides you with an international professional network and you work on your intercultural skills in a professional setting.
  • Travel advice: please note that in areas where the Ministry of Foreign Affairs issues a negative travel advice (Code Orange or Red), the university will not approve your internship.
  • Internship process: in addition to the abovementioned points, the same steps and forms apply for an internship abroad as for an internship in the Netherlands. You can find these on the internship page of your programme on students.uu.nl.

There are several ways to find an internship abroad:

1. You search one yourself. Below you will find some tips on how to search.

2. You can also ask an intermediary organisation for help. Below you will find a number of organisations that can help you; however, there are more.

Don't know yet what kind of organisation you want to do an internship with? A good start to your orientation is to take the free tests from Career Services. For more tips on how to get an internship that matches your interests and ambitions, check the internship manual for students on the internship page of your programme. Can't work it out? Make an appointment with the internship coordinator of your study programme. They will be happy to act as a sparring partner.

Option 1: Finding your own internship

An internship abroad can be done at many different kinds of organisations. Are you a Master’s student? Keep in mind that most Master’s programmes only allow internships that are related to the subject of your studies. Always contact your programme’s (internship) coordinator to discuss your plans.

Some examples:

  • Organisations/companies that do work in your field of interest and are in line with your study background;
  • A foreign branch of an organisation from your home country (for example: news organisations, embassies, cultural institutes or NGOs); or an organisation in your home country;
  • A local company abroad with an international orientation or in a country where you speak the/a language at a high level;
  • One of several international organisations or governing bodies (such as branches of the UN, the EU, NATO, or IGOs) or other organisations with an international orientation such as a multinational;
  • (Research projects at) foreign universities* or research institutes;
  • Museums, events, think tanks, cultural institutions, etc. with a collection/activities important for your specialisation.

* Internship Dutch as a Foreign Language: are you a student of Dutch, or are you interested in the Dutch language, language acquisition or language teaching? Then you can combine a study abroad with an internship teaching Dutch as a foreign language (NVT). Countries with many students of Dutch include France, Spain, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Germany. For more information and available traineeships, please contact Emmeline Besamusca-Douwes.

Option 2: Finding an internship through an intermediary organisation

There are several organisations that mediate in the search for internships. They often charge money for their work, so read the conditions carefully and ask yourself if this is really necessary for you. Not all internship vacancies are equally suitable, but you can use them to see which organisations offer internships and get ideas that way. Some links that may help you further:

When arranging your internship, you can use an international internship agreement (such as this model agreement). Also check what you have to take into account regarding health and safety: are there safety risks? How is health care organised?

Financing
Doing an internship abroad can be quite costly. Here are some useful links (mostly in Dutch):

Visas and permits 

  • Depending on your citizenship or current visa, you might need a visa or work permit.
  • Bear in mind that arranging a permit can take a long time. In some countries, this can take up to a year! So be sure to check well in advance.

Insurance and liability

  • Whether you are adequately insured during your internship depends on various factors, such as the amount of your internship fee, the duration of your internship and your age.
  • It is important that you have properly examined your individual situation before you go on an internship and have signed a contract. This also includes which insurances you have and how these are arranged according to the law and the internship contract.

When you have found an internship abroad, you must prepare your internship papers a few weeks before you leave. On the internship page of your study programme you can find what documents are required. In addition to going through these steps, you also need to register your internship abroad in OSIRIS: Through the button 'Abroad' you can indicate for which period you will do an internship abroad. Do not forget to fill in your foreign address. This way we can contact you in case of an emergency.

If you have questions after reading this information and the information on the internship page of your study programme (incl. internship manual), please contact the following contacts:

Other activities abroad

Besides an exchange or internship, there are several other possibilities to go abroad within the framework of your studies. The main difference with exchanges and internships is that there are no fixed contact persons within the Faculty of Humanities to whom you can turn for questions. The possibilities depend on your own initiative.

  • Summer or winter schools. Many universities offer summer- or winter schools. The website about summer- and winter schools offered by our exchange partners contains an overview, but it is not exhaustive. There are many possibilities worldwide.
  • Dutch Scientific Institutes Abroad (NWIBs). The Dutch universities run five institutes abroad. These institutes offer courses on location and can help with research or internships on site. There are many possibilities within the field of Humanities.
  • Source- or field research within the framework of your thesis. Some students choose a subject for their thesis that requires them to carry out source- or field research abroad.
  • Study trips with your programme. Some study programmes offer the opportunity to go on an excursion or study trip abroad as part of the regular courses.

Study trips are also sometimes organised by study associations. Because you do not receive any study credits for these study trips, they are not considered part of your study. Nevertheless, it can be very instructive.

Request approval

Do you want to have the credits you obtain abroad count towards your degree? If so, you can submit a request for approval by the Board of Examiners via Osiris Case, under the heading 'Approval of subjects from outside the UU'. Request approval as soon as you are sure about the content of your activities abroad. 

Registration for approval to travel

Please note! You must have approval from the faculty before you travel abroad for all trips within the framework of your studies (see below).

In all cases where you want to travel abroad as part of your studies, you will need to register in Osiris to get approval for this. It is very important for Utrecht University that we know where our students are and that we can reach them, for example when a travel advice changes to orange or red. If that happens, we will always contact the individual student to discuss the situation and see what the options are.

The registration depends on the type of activity abroad.

Exchange: Since the exchange application is done through Osiris, we already have all the data we need. A separate registration is not necessary. However, please make sure that the details of your emergency contact are up to date.

Internship or other study-related activity abroad (for example a summer school or course at a Dutch institute):

As soon as your plans are fixed, you will need to register via Osiris:

  • Go to Osiris
  • Go to the tab 'Abroad'
  • Go to 'new request'
  • Select 'internship/(field)research/other stay abroad'
  • Make sure that the details of your emergency contact are up to date.

The approval to travel abroad is separate from the procedure for approval of the content of your activities abroad.

When are you (not) permitted to travel abroad?

Utrecht University's policy is based on the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs' travel advice. In principle, you are not allowed to travel abroad for an exchange, internship or other study-related activity in a region for which the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has issued travel advice of the classification orange or red. You may therefore only travel if there is a green or yellow travel advice.

The colour-coded advice is categorised as follows:

Green

No particular safety risks

Yellow

Caution, safety risks

Orange

Essential trips only

Red

Do not travel

Please note! Students who travel abroad despite the orange or red travel advice will not receive any credits for the study components in question.

Do you want to travel abroad despite a negative travel advice from the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs? Then you must submit an official request for an exemption (see below).

In some cases, it is possible for students to obtain an exemption from the negative travel advice so that they can continue with their plans to travel abroad for a study component. The faculty board is authorised to grant exemptions, but has limited room to do so. Criteria on the basis of which an exception can be granted are:

  • A student is already abroad and has found an internship nearby. This does not involve any international travel. Mainly this concerns international students.
  • There remains very limited space for other exceptions. This is only possible if it concerns an obligatory part of the study, for which there is no alternative and, in opinion of Utrecht University, there are sufficient guaranteed that safety and health are assured. If, for example, an internship/study activity can also be done in the Netherlands, no exception can be granted. There must be no other internship/study activity possible than the internship/study activity abroad. 

Do you want to submit a request for an exemption? You can do so by sending this form (completed) to the Director of Education of your department:

Does your request concern an internship abroad? Please copy the e-mail to your internship coordinator and internship tutor.