Many PhD candidates and guest researchers come to Potsdam University from abroad to get a doctorate or work on research projects. Some will be in Potsdam for short periods of 1 to 3 months, others will stay several years. Some bring their families but many come on their own. We strive to match international and local buddies according to availability as well as area of research and campus affiliation.
As a buddy you would help new arrivals to settle in in Potsdam and at the university. Your responsibilities comprise the following points but may vary according to your buddy's individual needs:
(Should you be unable to answer your buddy's questions, please contact the Welcome Center.)
Should your buddy not have accommodation yet, it would be very helpful if you helped search! It is very difficult to find a suitable apartment or shared flat from abroad. The Welcome Center also offers support but cannot arrange accommodation for all international PhD students. Here are some tips for the search:
The Studentenwerk Potsdam only offers rooms to PhD candidates if there are free capacities - however, this is rarely the case.
When you have the time, please ask your buddy in advance when they will arrive and offer to pick them up at the train station or airport. Ideally, you'll exchange phone numbers in case your buddy is delayed or you have difficulty finding each other.
Offer your buddy tips on:
If both of you are interested, you could go on a guided city tour with your buddy!
On the website of the Welcome Center you can find information on how to register with the residents' registration office and with the foreigners' registration office.
Please check in with the Welcome Center beforehand to determine which authorities your buddy needs to visit and which particulars you may have to pay attention to.
In general, every resident who will stay in Germany longer than 3 months is obliged to register with the residents' registration office. If your buddy has to register or not depends on whether they still need to obtain a residence permit or whether they already have a permit for the entirety of their stay in Germany.
Does your buddy want to / have to be immatriculated? Help them find the right contact person, forms or required documents.
Obtaining a Doctorate at Potsdam University
Obtaining a doctorate at Potsdam University international doctoral candidates have to be immatriculated if their doctoral program regulation states so accordingly.
Obtaining a Doctorate in their Home Country
International PhD candidates who stay at Potsdam University for at least 3 months may be immatriculated. Their point of contact is the International Office (office for exchange students). Your buddy must hand in a document from their supervisor at Potsdam University that indicates the period covered by their stay. Further details pertaining to your buddy's individual case will be provided upon request.
If you have any questions, please contact the Welcome Center
Help your buddy to meet new people and spend some time with them yourself. Here are some tips:
If your buddy wants to learn German or improve their knowledge of German, help them find an opportunity to do that. Here are some tips: