My internship in Germany Or How I stayed in Germany for 2 months
I decided to apply for an internship in Germany in October. Why have I decided for Germany? It’s couple of reasons. The first and probably the most important one is that it is a country in Europe. Country choosing event took place online right at the beginning of a second Covid wave, when no one knew how or if the interships will be possible in the summer. I wanted to stay in Europe because I thought it’ll be simplier to travel here, I was hoping I wouldn’t have to quarantine and that Germans don’t cancel my internship. Second reason for me was, that I speak german, I’m thinking of applying for a job there when I finish the school. So that’s Germany for an obvious choice for me.
I did my internship in a city called Kiel. The city is located in the north Germany, right on the coast of Baltic sea. Population of Kiel is 247 000 people. It takes one hour from Kiel to Hamburg. The city itself is very beautiful, it is considered one of the greenest cities of Germany. The temperature throughout the summer was approximately 20°C. I would say the city is not big nor small.
I spent my summer in Endoprostetics, that is a specialised orthopaedics for knee/hip/shoulder replacement. It wasn’t my first choice, but given the situation with pandemic I was looking forward that I got a place and can spend summer abroad. My first day started with introduction to a doctor who said to me, that she cannot speak a good english but she’ll do her best. I suggested speaking in german and from that point on, everyone spoke to me only in german. The first 2 weeks were really difficult, I hadn’t spoken german for couple of years so I had trouble understanding them but everybody made sure I feel welcome, happy. They tried to repeat the sentences, talk slowly and after a while my german got better.
I can even begin to describe how awesome the intership was. I was able to do whatever I wanted. I came to the hospital at 7:15, at 7:30 I attended the doctor’s meeting and after I was able to choose whether I want to go to the department to assist the doctor with rounds, admissions etc or I want to go to the OR and assist. You can easily guess which option I chose. From the very begging they let me assist, they tried to explain everything what was going on in the surgery. By the end of August I assisted with almost 90 surgeries.
Being completely satisfied with the hospital I asked a head doctor after one surgery if I would be possible to stay there one more month. Because they were very satisfied with me as well, it was no proble to prolong my clinical intership in the hospital for the next for weeks. I just submitted an application, asked in my dorm if they have an empty room for August as well and nothing else was needed.
Local medical association was amazing as well. From the begging they informed me about everything I would need to bring with me, whether I have to go to quarantine or not (I’m vaccinated, so quarantine doesn’t apply to me). They provided perfect social programs.
As an exchange student I got 200€ as a pocket money for July.
If anyone is thinking whether to go on a exchange I say just do it. It is one of the best experiences you can get, you meet a lot of people from around the world, you get to experience different health care system, different culture and so much more.