Global Study Trend: Germany Soars As Top Destination For Indian Students

Global Study Trend: Germany Soars As Top Destination For Indian Students

Germany-based Immigration Coaches, Payal Sood and Gaurav Malhotra share insights from their experience with aspirant Indian students.

Simple VishwakarmaUpdated: Monday, March 18, 2024, 11:24 AM IST
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Payal Sood and Gaurav Malhotra |

For Indian students looking to pursue higher education overseas, Germany is quickly rising to the top of the list. This instalment of The Free Press Journal’s (FPJ) Global Study Trend series delves into Germany's higher education system by examining it from a social media perspective. 

Germany-based Payal Sood and Gaurav Malhotra are social media influencers and immigration coaches who offer aspirant Indian students insightful advice. While Sood is a scrum master and product owner in a multi-national corporation (MNC) Malhotra is an expert engineer in another MNC. 

The FPJ explores the areas of interest that are attracting Indian students to Germany throughout the discussion. The critical elements impacting a student’s choices, from navigating graduate, post-graduate and PhD programmes to investigating career opportunities. 

Navigating educational queries

Addressing frequently asked questions from Indian students, Sood sheds light on questions that frequently influence students' decision-making. Before starting their educational journey, prospective students want clarity on a number of issues, including the cost of school, language competency requirements, and the availability of English-taught courses. She said, “The most common questions which we commonly come across are: 'Is education really free in Germany?' 'Do you know German?' 'Do we need the German language as a prerequisite to come to Germany?' 'Do German universities offer courses in English medium?' 'Is it difficult to study abroad?'”

Sood further emphasises the significance of understanding the distinctions between institutions like Hochschule and University, alongside inquiries about residency and citizenship eligibility. “'Are there any easy ways to move to Germany?' 'What is the difference between a Hochschule and a University?' 'How long does one need to stay in Germany to be eligible for PR or passport?’” Sood added.

Preferred courses and cities

Gaurav highlighted the courses that Indian students most want to take, revealing a clear preference for mechanical engineering, software engineering, and fully-funded PhD programmes. Malhotra said, “When we guide them, our utmost suggestion lingers around not only the student's course of interest or university of choice but also the city of one's stay. We direct, as many fail to emphasise, city matters and matters a lot.”   

Even though these places have special prospects, students must deal with issues like high living costs and competition in the employment market, which calls for making well-rounded decisions. Furthermore, students' decisions are heavily influenced by the cities they choose, with Stuttgart, Berlin, Frankfurt, Hamburg, and Munich showing as top choices. He added, “These cities have their perks but they do have their push factors attached too. It is very expensive to live, difficult to find a job and finding appointments in foreign offices is a task here. One needs to find the right balance in their hunt for a city where the living expenses are not as high, at the same time part-time job opportunities are also available.”

For many Indian students, scholarships are a crucial tool in their quest for higher education. Listed several scholarship opportunities, including need-based, merit-based, and government grants like the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Scholarship, Deutschlandstipendium, and DAAD. Payal, drawing on her personal experience with Deutschlandstipendium, urges students to investigate these options as they can greatly reduce financial difficulties.

Factors driving preference for Germany

Germany appeals to Indian students for a variety of reasons, as Payal outlines. These include “Affordable or Free Education, Wide Range of Programs, Wide range of English-taught courses, Visa requirements are straightforward and once you get the appointment for the visa then the process does not take much time. If all the documents have been submitted correctly and in time.” 

Furthermore, she added, “One can get the PR within 21 months of getting the full-time job if you have a German B1 certificate or 33 months without a German certificate.”

According to Sood and Malhotra, the advantages offered by Germany resonate strongly with Indian students.  Malhotra mentioned, “Most of the advantages have been mentioned in previous questions. In a nutshell, some of them are Good quality and cheap education, Various fully paid PhD programs, Multiple master’s programs in English, and Easy rules for immigrants to get naturalization. Additionally, the flexibility to work part-time while studying and access to EU and EEA countries further enhance its appeal.”

Social Media impact and personal experiences:

Sood's social media presence has had a big influence on students' decision-making processes by offering insightful advice. She clarifies the difficulties with applying through her own experience, covering everything from complicated immigration procedures to financial planning to housing issues. She said, “Yes, we have guided many students to find the right course, university, city or even what they should do before and after arriving in Germany. Many students have already moved to Germany under our guidance. We consciously took this decision that we should guide students where we do not impose our decisions but become a friendly guide with their journey in exploration. In this way, they will not be burdened financially, and this will even help them to navigate through German websites and in future these skills can be used for searching for jobs. Approximately we get around 200-300 quires from the students.” 

We have encountered many people who know us via Instagram and instantly they look at us like they've known us for a while now. These faces have us ingrained in our hearts. These are the best moments for us as we see the trust people establish in us that we can become the tiniest part of their lives.

Speaking of her own journey, Sood highlighted her dream was the USA but finances led her to Germany. Germany's free education and scholarships were a game-changer. They struggled with visas, finances, competition, and housing, and got scammed by consultancies, but eventually thrived.

Guiding Tips for prospective students

Drawing from his experiences, Malhotra offers invaluable advice for students embarking on their educational journey to Germany. Emphasising the importance of early preparation, language proficiency, and thorough research, he said, “Learn German to settle faster and start early. Begin researching universities, programs, and admission requirements well in advance. Give yourself plenty of time to gather documentation, complete applications, and meet deadlines.”

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