The International Graduate Center offers excellent postgraduate programs, but they come with a certain price tag. Therefore financing your studies is an important question, with an answer at hand preferable before your have to concentrate on your studies. To help you we have put together the most common financial support options below:
Taking out student loans, as an international student, you have two options. You can either take out a student loan in your home country or in Germany. In Germany we differentiate between private student loans, state student loans and (private) education funds.
For most private student loans which are, for example, offered by the Deutsche Bank and Deutsche Kreditbank, you either need a guarantor and their certificate of creditworthiness (SCHUFA) or provide your own certificate of creditworthiness, but don't expect German banks to accept anything else other than the SCHUFA.
As an international student in Germany, you will find it difficult to get state student loans because of the requirements. However, BAföG would be an exception since international students who have worked in Germany for a longer period of time are eligible to apply for it.
Unfortunately, most education funds are usually reserved for German students.
Don't worry if you didn't get a student loan in Germany, there are always other options to finance your MBA or Master's degree.
Many employers have recognized that an MBA or Master program helps to keep employees from quitting and at the same time prepare them for more difficult roles, positions and changes in the market environment. Our students represent these changes. About every second student in one of our extra occupational studies are fully or partially sponsored by their employer. Students who finance their studies with the help of a sponsor are usually required to work for them another two or four years after completing their studies. Speak to your current or future employer and ask if they are interested in financing your studies. Note that sponsoring is not limited to our extra occupational studies or restricted to companies in Germany. If you can find a sponsor to fund your fulltime Master's degree, great!
To this date Scholarships are still being neglected by many students, make use of that and apply for them! The german national scholarship “Deutschlandstipendium” is one of those scholarships that you should definitely have a look at.
Regardless of nationality, if you are enrolled in one of our fulltime English-speaking MBA and Master programs you are also eligible to apply for postgrad bursaries. If you want to apply for more scholarships, look up the database of the DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service). You can apply for as many scholarships as you like. However, some scholarships are not combinable with other scholarships.
Payment by instalments
If you are in our extra occupational studies, you have the option of paying by instalments. That way you don't have to take on a loan and instead can pay your study fees in instalments. If that is of interest to you, contact your program coordinator to further discuss your financing options.
Work while studying
Finally, the majority of students in Germany are working while studying, despite being enrolled in a fulltime program since they can earn a maximum of 450€/month and don't have to pay taxes. Those 450€ can contribute significantly towards your cost of living or financing your studies. However, if you are a student from outside of the EU (third-country nationals), the amount of time you are allowed to work is limited and also depends on your residence permit. The best way for you to start working is by getting enrolled first, then applying for a residence permit and visiting the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit) with a concrete job offer. They are also your contact in case you have additional questions.
At the end most students choose not only one of the mentioned financial support options but combine them, since in most scenarios there are only a few options that really have the potential to completely fund your MBA or Master's degree. Thus, you should look at your options as items to put into your portfolio, meaning that you select the options that suit you and combine them with other options. For example, you could have saved for the tuition fees already and now you are only looking for a small/big scholarship and perhaps a small job to go with it to finance your cost of living.