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Leap In - Internship Program for GFZ Postdocs

The Leap In internship program provides an opportunity for postdocs to work in a professional environment beyond academia. Participants will spend up to 3 months at a company of their choice, gaining first-hand experience in a new working environment. During the internship, participants will build their professional network and improve their CV.
The Leap In Internship program provides an unique, fully paid, opportunity to discover how your current skill set can be applied outside of academia.
Application is closed now (was open until 8 February).

As a participant of the Leap In Internship program you will have the opportunity to develop your career outside of academia. The Career Center will support you to find a fitting company for your internship. Companies can come from any field outside of academia. Furthermore, you will actively participate in Career Center events, i.e. Career Coffee Chats,  to meet and exchange your experience with the other participants and GFZ researchers.

Participants have to invest time and energy in identifying the best company for them, and defining the scope and expectations of their internship with this company. You must have a valid GFZ contract when starting your internship. Please make sure that your leader/PI is informed about your application. Participants salary will be covered by the GFZ during their internship.

What is the length of an internship? Internships can last for a minimum of 8 weeks and maximum of 3 months.

When must the internship take place? Internships must be completed by the end of March 2024.

How is the internship funded? GFZ will pay your current salary for the duration of your internship.

Should the company be locally located? Ideally the company should be based in the Berlin/Brandenburg region. There are some funds available for travel / accommodation expenses if the company is located somewhere else within Germany. International internships will not be supported.

Which type of companies could be internship hosts? As a general rule, all companies outside of academia could host an internship (eg., multinational companies, startups, NGOs etc.). We are in contact with global and local companies. In addition, we encourage participants to identify companies they would like to act as a host for their internship. When identifying a company for your internship please consider the company contacts within your research group.

What are the commitments of the participants taking part in the program? To ensure that the wider GFZ community benefits from your experience we ask that interns:

  • Share your experience in a Career Coffee Chat
  • Have an active role in Industry Day in October
  • Complete a Final Report
  • Have a feedback meeting with the Career Center

Does this effect the length of my current working contract at the GFZ? The internship can take place in the middle of a postdocs contract, with the contract being extended by the length of the internship. Alternatively, it can start at the end a postdoc contract, with the condition that there are no breaks in employment between the current contract and start of the internship.

Should I continue to work on my research project during the internship? During your internship you are not required to continue work on your current research project.

What is my PIs involvement in the internship program? We encourage you to discuss your application for this program with your PI. When identifying a company for your internship please consider the company contacts within your research group.

The program is open to a maximum of 6 participants. To apply for the program you need to fill in an  application form and send it to the Career Center by 8 February: career-center@gfz-potsdam.dePlease include your most up to date CV with your application. We recomend updating your LinkedIn profile.