All MSc programmes at Wageningen University include an academic oriented internship and thesis research period. The internship is a learning period during which the relationship with professional practice is emphasised. The internship has a subject code and number which you will find in the study handbook. The internship usually lasts about six months. Every Master study programme (120 credits) has programme-specific subjects, an academic Master block (12 credits), an internship (24-30 credits) and a thesis (30-39 credits). One credit is equivalent to 28 hours of study.
In order to find an internship you need to plan your search and start looking well in advance, i.e. at least 3 months before you want to do the internship. There are several ways to find an internship in the Netherlands. Students often find their way to a work placement through the extensive university network, aided by university staff. University chair groups usually have an internship co-ordinator. Alternatively, you may find an internship through personal contacts, an internship bureau, or by approaching a private or public company or organisation directly.
Once you have reflected on your motivation and have a clear picture of what you are looking for, you can start the actual search. You need to draw up a CV (resume) that is acceptable to Dutch companies and organisations. It is also advisable to prepare for interviews and writing application letters. Although the English language is commonly used in research and in the Dutch companies it is well worth the effort to do a Dutch language course at Language Services in Wageningen. This will make interaction with colleagues easier.
When you are looking for an internship/ thesis research, you have to bear in mind certain general requirements such as: tasks on a suitable (academic) level, cooperation in a project, independence and own responsibility, disposal of a desk and pc, a competent in-company supervisor, time.
The practical training contract (Internship Contract) formalises the agreements made between the student-trainee, the University department (internship coordinator or supervisor) and the practical training provider. The contract contains information about the trainee, the practical training provider, study plan, supervision, duties and obligations, facilities etc. In this sense, it is a further supplementation and elaboration of the rights and obligations that the parties already have based on the Higher Education and Research Act, the Education and Exam Regulations and the student statute.
>> Download the Internship Contract on the Forms page
In the Netherlands it is common for a student to receive an allowance for the internship/ thesis research. A reasonable allowance is on average € 300-350 gross/month.
Dutch law requires all residents to have health insurance and legal liability insurance. Please note that at the moment you receive an allowance or income you are obliged to change your insurance to the new "Basic Health Insurance Policy".
Under certain conditions, the Executive Board can reimburse the travel costs for an internship or thesis in a tropical or developing country based on the Travel Funding Regulations of Wageningen University.
To qualify, the student must be enrolled ‘as a student’ at Wageningen University in one of the MSc programmes:
- MSc International Land and Water Management
- MSc International Development Studies
- MSc Development and Rural Innovation
In case the student is enrolled ‘as a student’ in another MSc- or BSc-programme of which the internship or thesis is part of the prescribed programme (BSc) or individual set of MSc examination subjects, at least 18 credits aimed at tropical or developing countries must have been earned previous to the internship or thesis.
Students who receive a grant or bursary from any third party which includes an amount designated as ‘research fees’ can not apply.
The internship must always be approved by the study advisor and the internship or thesis supervisor.
As part of the application procedure for the travel funding, the income of the student’s parents is taken into account. This condition does not apply for students who are financially independent of their parents.
The reimbursement amounts to 75% of the travel costs to a maximum of €1000,-. A possible contribution to the travel costs made by the person or institution who offers the internship or thesis will be deducted from the costs eligible for reimbursement.
The travel costs will be reimbursed only once to a student (either for an internship or for a thesis), regardless how many Wageningen University study programmes he is following.
The student must apply to the Student Service Centre (SSC) for travel funding within 13 weeks after the internship/ thesis is completed. In the event of an emergency, the student can submit a request to the Student dean for payment of an advance on the travel funding prior to leaving.
The Wageningen University Travel Funding Regulation replaces the Wageningen University Travel Grant (2006/2007 Student Charter, 10.4) as from 1 January 2007. Some implementation agreements are made. They are part of the regulations which are published as Appendix VIII of this Student Charter. The conditions of the regulations will be updated every academic year. The first update concerns the 2008/2009 regulations.