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Working and internships during studies

A student who has been granted a residence permit for studies is allowed to

  • engage in gainful employment without restrictions if the employment consists of practical training or diploma work as part of a degree, and
  • in addition, work in paid employment for a maximum of 30 hours per week. 
    • The number of working hours can be exceeded some weeks, as long as the average working hours are no more than 30 hours per week at the end of the year.

Students can no longer work without restrictions during holidays or at the times when the educational institution offers no instruction. The right to work changed when the amendments to legislation on students and researchers entered into force on 15 April 2022.

Internships

A person who is coming to carry out an internship at an educational institution must have a residence permit. Internships cannot be carried out visa-free or with a visa. A residence permit is not granted for unpaid internships. The intern has to receive monetary compensation for the internship.

A person residing in Finland with a residence permit for studies can spend an unlimited time as an intern as part of his or her degree.

Apprenticeship training

A residence permit can also be granted for apprenticeship training. Apprenticeship training is education that mainly takes place at a workplace, in genuine work situations. The employer and the student sign a written apprenticeship agreement, which is a fixed-term contract of employment.  

If the student will complete less than half of his or her studies in apprenticeship training, he or she can study with a residence permit for studies. If the student will complete half or more of his or her studies in apprenticeship training, he or she will need a residence permit for an employed person. For more information on apprenticeship training, see the website of the Finnish National Agency for Education (in Finnish).