This page will provide you with all the information you need when applying for an IAESTE Internship. Please read this through carefully. Should you still have questions, we can refer you to our FAQ page. On the bottom of this page, you can find links to download important documents that can help you with your application.
There are two ways to apply for an internship with IAESTE Belgium:
- Through our yearly procedure. This concerns the major part of our internships and is the most well-known procedure. The procedure is described in detail below. In short, it consists out of these steps:
- Before January: Fill out the IAESTE Wish List (non-binding and not obligatory, but this helps us with finding internships that suit your interests)
- First weeks of February: Apply through the IAESTE Belgium Application Platform.
- Before the end of February: If your application is accepted by IAESTE Belgium, then submit your Nomination Package on the international IAESTE Exchange Platform.
- If your nomination is accepted by the employer, then sign the remaining acceptance documents and you're good to go!
- Through applying for an internship on a first-come-first-serve basis. IAESTE also offers internships all year round. This is possible through the IAESTE International Exchange Platform, where the internships available for students enrolled at one of the three Belgian member universities (UGent, VUB/ULB and KULeuven) are listed. Instructions how to register on this platform can be found here. To apply for one of these internships, send an email to email@example.com including your Nomination Package (keep reading to find out what a Nomination Package is). No deadlines apply for this procedure, apart from the ones mentioned on the internship offer forms themselves. These are NOT the same internships as the ones shown on the IAESTE Belgium Application Platform, so make sure to make an account on the IAESTE International Exchange Platform and have a look once in a while!
Applying through the standard yearly procedure
Important dates for the 2018 exchange season (deadlines are marked with an (*)):
- IAESTE Wish List: Here you indicate in what kind of internship you would be interested. This helps us looking for internships that match your interests. Deadline: 10/01/2018
- Applications open: 28/01/2018 on our new Application Platform.
- Application deadline (*): 16/02/2018 19:00
- Nominations online: 20/02/2018
- Accept your nomination: 22/02/2018
- Nomination package (*): 01/03/2018
- Acceptance by company: unfortunately, it is difficult to say when exactly you will get accepted by the company. It is not unusual to get accepted in May or even in June.
Below you can read about the entire process that happens to arrange your internships. The steps underlined and with an asterisk (*) next to it are the steps that you as an applicant have to do, the other steps are performed by IAESTE Belgium.
This is the part where we, IAESTE Belgium, call Belgian companies to gather internships for international Science and Engineering students. For every internship that we can offer to international students, a student from Belgium can go on an internship abroad.
IAESTE Wish List (*)
Interested students can fill out the IAESTE Wish List, indicating their bachelors/masters degree, field of study and their countries of interest. This helps us to estimate the demand for certain internships and countries, so we can try to take this into account when exchanging internships at the AC (see further). The Wish List is not a prerequisite to be able to apply for an internship.
Deadline Wish List: usually end of December.
Link: see top of the page.
At the Annual Conference (AC), taking place in January, we exchange our internships: the ones from Belgian companies get exchanged for internships all over the world. The internships exchanged at the Annual Conference appear online on our IAESTE Belgium Application Platform at the beginning of February.
Students can apply for the available internships through the IAESTE Belgium Application Platform. To apply, an Application Package is needed. The goal of this package is to convince us, IAESTE Belgium, that you are the best candidate for the internship you are applying for. It is possible to apply for a maximum of three internships through our yearly procedure. The Application Package contains the following documents, in English:
- Motivation letter. One motivation letter per internship is required! Be aware that this is a very important part of your application; the motivation letter is expected to be in a formal letter format (your credentials, "dear ...", "sincerely, ..."). Convince us why you are the best fit for the particular internship you are applying for.
- Transcript of Records (English list of courses and grades)
These documents should be submitted on the Application Platform of IAESTE Belgium. Be aware that all documents should be in English. The CV and each motivation letter cannot be longer than one page. If you are in your masters, you should submit the Transcript of Records of both your bachelors and masters; combine them into one PDF and upload it as a single file (not as a ZIP file or as multiple PDF files). Keep in mind that if you are accepted for an internship, you can still change the motivation letter a bit before we send it to the employer.
Also remember that you should NOT contact the employer yourself! If you have questions about an internship you can contact us, but under no circumstance contact the employer directly. The reason for this is explained on our FAQ page.
You can find the deadline (usually end of February) for application in the list above.
After receiving all applications, IAESTE Belgium makes a preselection of the candidate whose application will be forwarded to the employer. In this nomination procedure, we take into account the following, in order of importance:
- CV: the candidate needs to fit the job description.
- Motivation letter: motivation has to be sound, a well written and enthusiastic letter scores high.
- Experience: does the candidate have relevant experience.
- Phone call: if it’s becoming hard to select a candidate based on the above criteria, we sometimes just call applicants and ask for their motivation, on the spot. This has previously given us the chance to establish whether a person has the right motivation and is open enough for the experience.
- Grades: if really nothing else is left to distinguish between candidates, grades are taken into account for candidate selection.
Nominations will be announced on the IAESTE Belgium Application Platform.
Not nominated? Do not despair, often there are internships that did not get filled! After announcement of the nominations, it will be possible to apply for these on a first-come-first-serve basis (first suited candidate that applies, gets nominated). Apart from the internships on the IAESTE Belgium Application Platform, there is also a continuous stream of offers on the IAESTE International Exchange Platform. You can find below how you can apply for these internships.
After nomination (*), your Application Package needs to be upgraded to a Nomination Package. This nomination package is what is sent to the employer, to convince them that you are a good candidate for the internship. He/she always gets to decide whether to accept you as an intern or not.
You upload your Nomination Package on the International IAESTE Exchange Platform. How to register and more information can be found in the Exchange Platform Student Guide.
The Nomination Package consists of the same documents as the Application Package:
- Improved CV/Motivation letter. Now you need to address your motivation letter directly to the employer instead of to IAESTE Belgium. You can always ask us for feedback, and likely there will be organised sessions to give some tips and tricks.
- Transcript of Records: should this contain lower grades or fails, you can also just make a list of the courses (and their credits) you have followed/are following up until that point, without mentioning your grades. Some employers do require to see your grades though.
extended with the following documents:
- Portfolio (for Architecture students)
- Certificate of Enrollment (English proof of registration at your university)
- Picture of yourself
- A copy of your passport (or ID card if you don't have a passport)
- Language certificate for English; you can find a template here. This can be filled and signed by a professor you get a course in English from, your high school teacher, ...
- Recommendation letter(s) (obliged/recommended for some internships, not necessary for all of them)
- A filled in Student Nominated Form, that will be sent to you once you are nominated
- Any relevant certificates (language certificates, additional courses...)
- Proof of payment (this can be a screenshot after the payment has been confirmed). To cover administration costs, we ask you to pay a fee of €175 (€110 for a scholarship student). This amount of €175/€110 includes a warranty of €50, that will be reimbursed when you send us a small report about your experience after your internship. You can transfer the fee using the following credentials:
- BE28 7330 0289 9320
- BIC: KRED BE BB
- Message: IAESTEfee-Lastname-Firstname.
These administration costs are only paid back in the following cases and with approval of IAESTE Belgium:
- The student is not accepted by the employer
- The internship is cancelled by the employer
- The specifications of the internship changed
- Exams to redo during summer, if they concern a second semester subject and if you can prove you made a sufficient effort to change the dates of your exam and/or internship to prevent overlap
Deadline Nomination Package: see the list above (usually end of February / beginning of March)
And now the waiting for confirmation begins... It can sometimes take a while before an employer accepts you as an intern. Some countries/employers are fast to respond, others like to postpone. It is not allowed to contact the employer yourself before you get confirmation of your acceptance. Some companies however will contact you themselves and ask for a Skype interview. Look at this as a real job application! It is not unusual to get acceptance in May or even in June, a couple of weeks before the internship starts. Unfortunately, internships do get cancelled sometimes (not often) as well (the company doesn't have the fund anymore, the project got cancelled, ...).
Once the employer abroad has confirmed your acceptance as a candidate for the internship, you can book your flights and really start getting excited! There are only three things left to do now:
- Sign the N5b form, hereby completing the final Acceptance Package. This form contains the final information on your internship (duration, wage, ...) and is a contract between you and the employer.
- Start arranging the necessary insurance forms.
- If you want to get your internship acknowledged for credits (depending on the regulations of your university/faculty), you can also start arranging those forms.
Remember: even if you don't get accepted, you have gained valuable experience in making a CV/motivation letter, and possibly in being interviewed for a job. Don't give up and check the Exchange Platform showing the other IAESTE offers that you can apply for.
Applying through the Exchange Platform
You can also apply all year round for the internships available on the Exchange Platform. Instructions on how to register can be found here. To apply for one of these internships, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org including your nomination package documents (scroll up to find out what these are).