International Office

Katja Kaboth-Larsen

Losing your job as a consequence of the Corona crisis can mean serious financial problems and have a negative impact on the academic success of international students and doctoral candidates. On this page you can find information and support offers.

What financial support is available to international students and doctoral candidates?


The Student Council (AStA) can grant an interest-free loan of up to EUR 1,000 to bridge financial bottlenecks. Please contact the AStA by e-mail at and state your request and a telephone number.

The KfW Student Loan Programme (interest free) has been opened up for non-EU international students who are now unable to finance their studies due to the Corona crisis. You can apply for this loan programme starting on 1 June, 2020 and receive your first rate (max. 650,- Euros/ month) on 1 July, 2020. Applications are welcome until 31 March, 2021.
KFW student loan

One-off aid, bridging aid & grants

By raising donations for international students and and further DAAD funds, grant funds will still be available in 2020. The prerequisite is that you complete your studies within the next two years and that can prove that there is a financial need. In order to do so, please contact welmu2hhcome@uol.dvweh0y and let us know your request and a telephone number. You will then receive an appointment for a consultation and further information on which documents to submit.

The Protestant Student Congregation (ESG)  and the Catholic University Congregation (KHG) can also make one-off payments in justified cases. Please use the consultation offer of the respective institution.

The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is helping students who are demonstrably in a financial or economic emergency situation owing to the corona pandemic with allowances totalling 100 million euros. For the University of Oldenburg, the allowances are paid out via the student service organisation "Studentenwerk Oldenburg": Studentenwerk Oldenburg bridging aid ("Überbrückungshilfe")

Other support options

The city of Oldenburg started a food voucher programme for inhabitants who are experience financial hardship and do not have the money to purchase food. The food voucher programme is coordinated by "Diakonisches Werk Oldenburg-Stadt" and can be reached via phone at 0441 97093-0

Oldenburg's food voucher programme (in German)

Hildegardis Corona emergency aid for female christian students (in German)

Share'n'care - food sharing of the AStA Oldenburg (general students's committee)

What if I cannot pay my living expenses (e.g. rent) due to the consequences of the Corona crisis?

As a rule, contracts may not be terminated if you have financial difficulties due to a loss of employment caused by the Corona crisis! The same applies to electricity, gas and telephone lines. If you are currently unable to make payments, you should actively contact the relevant office, e.g. your landlord, your health insurance company, your mobile phone company, the broadcasting fees office, etc.

If you are living in a hall of residence run by the student service organisation (Studentenwerk Oldenburg) and can no longer pay your rent, please contact the accounting department of the Studentenwerk directly with appropriate proof (e.g. certificates, termination of employment by your employer, etc.): resschn3j+2ungswesenida@s3inc4w-ol.dbxebdueb. The accounting department will then try to find a solution.

If you live in private accommodation and have rent debts between 1 April and 30 June 2020, you will be given the opportunity to pay the rent you have defaulted on until the end of June 2022.

Other job options

Due to the high demand resulting from the Corona crisis, many large German supermarket chains are urgently looking for new employees, including student assistants. Maybe this is an option for some. So, ask at the supermarket in your area. Delivery services, logistics companies, petrol stations and cleaning companies are also currently looking for staff. Helpers are also wanted as the harvesting season begins. Maybe this would be an opportunity for you too.

Psychologigal counseling during the Corona Crisis

As international student in pandemic Germany you may have been experiencing a lot of intense and challenging emotions over the past weeks. Being physically distant from loved ones too far away to visit when wanting to be close to them is already difficult during normal times. Under the impact of global travel restrictions, massive economic turbulences and the threat of a potentially harmful virus that scientists still know little about, however, studying abroad has become even more challenging. As psychological counselors supporting you to maintain good mental health, we are not only aware of the problems you and your families are facing during these emotionally difficult times, but committed to supporting you to the best of our knowledge and capacity.

Just to give you an idea of typical concerns raised in counselling sessions, please see below a list of issues, we are prepared to support you with (amongst all other mental health concerns that may not be directly related to the COVID-19 pandemic, of course!)

  • The fear of losing my financial security is distracting me from my studies. What can I do?
  • My parents have pre-existing conditions and are at an age that makes them vulnerable to experiencing serious health problems should they contract the virus. I am afraid they could get seriously ill and wonder how I could persuade them to protect themselves.
  • Since face-to-face teaching has been suspended and I cannot meet with fellow students for discussing materials and assignments, I have great difficulty concentrating on lectures and home works. How can I get back my focus?
  • Two times a week I went to the gym. On weekends I liked to party. Those outlets have become impossible to pursue. I am worried, if this lasted much longer, I will feel increasingly isolated and relapse into depression. How can I prevent this from happening?

If you wish to talk to a counselor about these or any other mental health-related concerns, please do not hesitate to send an email to the Psychological Counseling Service Team at! They will be happy to invite you to a phone or videotelephony consultation at your earliest convenience.

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