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Internship in France

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Looking forward to perform an internship in France? Find out how to proceed in this article.

According to the legislation passed on the 10th of July 2014, internship is defined as a temporary period of work-based simulation exercise whereby the student or trainee acquires professional skills and implement the achievements of his training so as to obtain a degree or certificate and promote his professional integration.

So if you are planning to perform an internship in France, you should know that the country is very open towards foreigners. Moreover, relating conditions and formalities are rather simple. So what are you waiting for?

Find internship

There are various ways to look for internship in France. You can start by selecting a few companies in which you might be interested according to your field of studies. Consider sending them spontaneous job applications. Feel free to seek help from your university or higher education institution which probably has contacts in France. You may also try your luck with the following links:

CIDJ www.cidj.com
KAP’Stages www.kapstages.com
Jobstage www.jobstage.com
Jobs Abroad jobs.goabroad.com
L’Étudiant www.letudiant.fr
Monster France offres.monster.fr
Iagora www.iagora.com
Go Abroad www.goabroad.com
Eurasmus eurasmus.com
US Embassy in Paris france.usembassy.gov

Conditions

To be allowed to perform an internship legally in France, the foreign trainee must be in possession of an internship agreement signed jointly by his higher education institution and the company which is willing to take him on board.

At the end of the internship period, the company will issue an internship report which should mention the knowledge and skills acquired by the trainee during the internship period. Note that the trainee will not be considered as an employee during the internship period.

Non-European nationals

Two months internship

Students looking forward to perform a maximum of two months' internship first have to apply for a short stay or Schengen visa. The request has to be made at the nearest French consulate or embassy to his place of residence. In the case of countries like Tunisia, application has to be made at Campus France.

In general, the following documents have to be produced:

  • a duly filled and signed application form
  • your passport (which has to be valid for three months following the end of your internship in France)
  • two passport size identity photos
  • proof of health insurance and special Schengen repatriation which should be valid throughout the duration of your stay in France
  • an internship agreement signed by you, your university and the company which is taking you on board
  • proof of accommodation (hosting certificate or hotel booking)
  • proof of sufficient funds to support yourself during your stay in the country
  • visa fees receipt.

Note that this list is non-exhaustive as other documents may also be requested, depending on your home country.

More than three months internship

In the case of students making a more than three months internship in France, a long-stay internship visa (VLS-TS) is required. Application has to be made at the nearest French embassy or consulate to their place of residence or at Campus France.

In general, the following documents have to be produced:

  • a duly filled and signed visa application
  • your passport (which has to be valid for three months following the end of your internship in France)
  • two passport size identity photos
  • the internship agreement signed by you, your university and the company which is taking you on board, stamped by the Direction Régionale des Entreprises, de la Concurrence, de la Consommation, du Travail et de l’Emploi (DIRECCTE)
  • proof of accommodation for the whole duration of your internship (hotel booking, housing provided by the company, lease documents)
  • proof of sufficient funds (615 € per month if you are performing an internship as part of your higher studies program or the French minimum wage in the case of continuous training – around 1,457.52 Euros)
  • visa fees receipt.

 Warning:

Once you have received your visa, it must be validated and stamped by the Office Français de l’Immigration et de l’Intégration (OFFI) on your arrival in the country.

 Useful links:

Expat.com – Work in France Forum 
DIRECCTE – Directions Régionales des Entreprises, de la Concurrence, de la Consommation, du Travail et de l'Emploi www.direccte.gouv.fr
OFFII www.ofii.fr
Campus France www.campusfrance.org

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