For international students, studying in the Netherlands can be a transforming experience, but what happens after graduation? In a new country, the transition from student to professional is filled with opportunities and obstacles. We spoke with Belén, a recent graduate from Radboud University, to shed light on this transition and came up with some useful advice for both EU and non-EU students.
Using Internships to Advance Your Career
Internships are crucial for learning about the practical aspects of your chosen field. They provide an opportunity to apply academic knowledge in real-world settings, giving you a taste of your future job. Internships are important, according to Belén: “They’re not just a resume builder; they’re a bridge to the Dutch professional world.”
Internships can expose overseas students to the subtleties of Dutch working culture. They provide opportunity to network, learn from experienced professionals, and develop highly valued skills in the Dutch employment market and in their chosen field.
Part-Time Jobs: A Look at the Dutch Work Culture
Part-time jobs, while frequently neglected, can be just as rewarding. Belén describes her part-time job at a nearby café: “It taught me about the Dutch emphasis on work-life balance and the informal yet respectful workplace atmosphere.”
Part-time work in any area can help students comprehend the Dutch work culture, which is characterised by direct communication, egalitarianism, and a strong emphasis on teamwork. These jobs also assist in the development of language skills and cultural knowledge, both of which are necessary for social and professional integration.
Make sure to check out our vacancies, if you’re looking for a part-time job alongside your studies.
The Orientation Year Visa: A First Step
Belén advocates the orientation year visa for non-EU students, which enables graduates a year to pursue work without a work permit. “It’s a period full of possibilities,” she said. Meanwhile, EU students should take advantage of their freedom to migrate and work inside the EU, even if they must to navigate a competitive labour market.
For more information, about the visa check out our blog “All you need to know about Orientation Year Visa Netherlands (Search Year Visa) – International Students Work”
Learning Dutch: A Key to Expanding Your Opportunities
Despite the fact that many Dutch people speak English, Belén recommends studying Dutch to a conversational level. “It’s not just about language; it’s about showing your commitment to integrating into Dutch society,” she said. This advice is useful for both EU and non-EU students because it can improve both professional and personal interactions.
Making the Most of Your Orientation Year
Belén advises spending this time for networking, job applications, and, if possible, internships or part-time work. “It’s about building a career and a life here,” she said.
Additional Transition Strategies
– Investigate Dutch Work Culture: Learn about workplace
rules in the Netherlands, such as punctuality and directness.
– Understand Legal Requirements: Understand the legal
implications of staying in the Netherlands, such as residency permits and
– Spend Your Money Wisely: The Netherlands can be expensive;
efficient budgeting is essential.
– Healthcare and Insurance: EU students can use their EHIC,
whilst non-EU students must have appropriate health insurance.
– Social Integration: Seek help and networking from local
and international communities.
In summary, the post-study path in the Netherlands involves a combination of planning, cultural adaptation, and taking use of chances. With Bèlen’s insights and these extra advice, overseas graduates can successfully manage this transition, paving the path for a successful and enjoyable life in the Netherlands.
Are you ready to take the next step in your career then check out our blog ‘Tips on Getting a Job in the Netherlands after Graduation’