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Traineeships

Blue Book traineeship programme.

This site is available in English, French and German – the three working languages of the European Commission.

Application procedure

The application procedure consists of three steps:

  1. Create a EU Login account or login with an existing one
  2. Complete and submit the application form along with your supporting documents
  3. If successful, you will be invited to check the openings published on VBB portal and apply for a chosen traineeship post.

Step 1: Create an EU Login or connect with an existing account

Register on European Commission Authentication Service (EU Login) to begin your application.

If you are a new user

EU Login

  • click here to create an account
  • fill in the sign-up form
  • click 'submit'
  • check your email account (including your spam folder) for confirmation
  • in the email, follow the link to 'create your password'
  • choose your password and submit it
  • click 'proceed' to the application form
  • use either the email or your ECAS username to login afterwards.Candidates for EC traineeships cannot login using electronic IDs.

Issues? Check 'Help for external users'.

For all questions regarding your registration with EU Login (European Commission's authentication service) see the EU Login FAQ page or contact eu-login-external-support@ec.europa.eu.

Step 2: Complete and submit the application form

a) Go to your candidate account, click on Send an application and choose the traineeship type to access the application form. Fill in the form section by section or jump from one section to another using the menu on the left-hand side of the page. Read and follow carefully the instructions provided for each section.  

You do not have to fill in everything in a single session. Save your entries and log back in at any time to continue and submit your application. You can preview your application form at any time, before or after submitting it.  

You cannot make changes to the application once it has been submitted.    

Log in and complete each section of the application form following carefully the instructions provided. 

You do not have to fill in the entire form in a single session. You can save your entries and log in later to make changes and submit your application using your username and password. You can also preview your application form in a printer-friendly pdf format at any time during the application period. 

b) Upload your supporting documents. 

You must attach the following supporting documents to your application form: 

  1. Table of contents showing the list of documents in the PDF, point by point.
  2. A copy of your:
    • valid ID card or passport 
    • university qualifications of studies completed before the deadline for applications 
  3. Proof of 
    • university exchange programmes abroad, participation in EU or international programmes, seminars or workshops 
    • all declared language skills (other than mother tongue/s) 
    • all declared work experience 

Please ensure that you upload all the justification documents to support every item declared on your application form, before submitting it. The pre-selection committee will reject your application if you do not provide adequate evidence of your declared studies, language knowledge, experience and other information stated on the form. Document only the items you have declared. 

It is highly recommended to prepare your supporting documents well in advance to avoid missing the deadline. No additional documents or justifications will be admitted after the reception of the application. 

Allow up to 3 working days for a response if you require (technical) assistance. 

c) Once your application is submitted, you will need to wait for the results of its evaluation. You will be informed about the results via e-mail. In case of acceptance, you will be invited to apply to available traineeship positions.  

Have you already submitted your application? Wait for the result of the evaluation phase! We will send the results via e-mail and publish them in your account. Make sure you check your account regularly.  

If successful, we will invite you to apply to available traineeship positions. 

Step 3: Apply for up to 3 traineeship posts in VBB

You will receive instructions to connect to Virtual Blue Book portal where Commission services and agencies propose various traineeship positions. The number of proposed positions matches the number of trainees per session. Carefully read the job description and the details of the post. You may mark as many positions as you like as favourites.  

Candidates may apply for up to three posts. Applications for traineeship positions in VBB will be allowed for one week. Post openings will be unpublished as soon as the maximum number of applicants has been reached or after one week.  

Please do not wait until the very last few days for applying.  

Once there are enough applications registered for a specific post, the position will disappear from the list.  

Questions related to the application procedure

You should provide the following documents, in this order: 

0. Table of contents showing the list of documents in the PDF, point by point. 

1. Copy of a valid passport or identity card proving the nationality indicated in the application form.

2.  Copies of all university degrees indicated in the application form and/or transcripts from the relevant university (i.e. list of subjects studied each year). 

Please ensure that the date of graduation and final grades are indicated.

3. Copies of certifications/licenses obtained, as indicated in the application form, if applicable. 

4. Copies of evidence of all declared work experience in the home country, as indicated in the application form, if applicable.

This may include:

  • Letters of reference from an employer, which must be headed/duly signed and stamped, dated and clearly indicate the period of work   
  • Contracts that clearly state the period of work 
  • Pay slips which clearly state the period of work 
  • Tax declarations are accepted also for freelancers provided that they cover the period in question and the employer is clearly identified 
  • Invoices provided that they cover the period in question and the employer is clearly identified. 

5. Copies of evidence of all international experience indicated in the application form, if applicable.

Work experience may include: 

  • Letters of reference from an employer, which must be headed / duly signed, dated and clearly indicate the period of work 
  • Contracts that clearly state the period of work 
  • Pay slips which clearly state the period of work.

Note: E-mails are not accepted as evidence. 

Experience of mobility abroad may include:

  • Copies of diplomas obtained abroad 
  • Erasmus certificates 
  • Certificates from study exchange programmes 
  • Certificates of volunteer work 
  • Pay slips which clearly state the period of work

Note: E-mails are not accepted as evidence. 

The dates in the application form and the supporting documents must match. Any irregularities will lead to exclusion. You should declare international studies both in the education part and in the international experience part of the application form.  International work experience should be declared only under international experience (“non-declared work experience”) and not in work experience. 

6. Copies of evidence of language skills declared in the application form.

You can prove your proficiency in a language by one of the following means: 

  • Certificates of language courses clearly indicating the level of knowledge achieved issued by: 
    • language centres such as Instituto Cervantes, Alliance française, Goethe Institut, etc.
    • state-recognised language schools issuing certified attestations and that make a clear correspondence to CERF.
  • Certificate of attendance of a superior level can count as proof of the immediately inferior level. Example: Certificate of attendance of a C1 level can be accepted as proof of a B2 level. 
  • University course: BA or MA taught wholly or partly in the language declared:  
    • A degree wholly taught in the declared language allows a declaration of a C2 level
    • A degree partially taught in the declared language, i.e. corresponding to at least half of the credits needed to obtain the degree (this must be clear from the transcripts: the teaching must be given and the examinations taken and passed in the said language) allows a declaration of a C1 level.
  • Certificates of bilingual education at secondary level issued by European Schools, international lycées, etc. allow a declaration of a C1 level.
  • Proof of having worked in the declared language for more than a year (allows to declare a C1 level). 
  • Mother tongues are also considered a 'very good knowledge'. However, no points are awarded for mother tongues. 

You can prove your proficiency in a language by one of the following means: 

  • Certificates of language courses clearly indicating the level of knowledge achieved issued by: 
    • language centres such as Instituto Cervantes, Alliance française, Goethe Institut, etc.
    • state-recognised language schools issuing certified attestations and that make a clear correspondence to CEFR.
  • Certificate of attendance of a superior level can count as proof of the immediately inferior level. Example: Certificate of attendance of a C1 level can be accepted as proof of a B2 level. 
  • University course: BA or MA taught wholly or partly in the language declared:  
    • A degree wholly taught in the declared language allows a declaration of a C2 level
    • A degree partially taught in the declared language, i.e. corresponding to at least half of the credits needed to obtain the degree (this must be clear from the transcripts: the teaching must be given and the examinations taken and passed in the said language) allows a declaration of a C1 level.
  • Certificates of bilingual education at secondary level issued by European Schools, international lycées, etc. allow a declaration of a C1 level.
  • Proof of having worked in the declared language for more than a year (allows to declare a C1 level). 
  • Mother tongues are also considered a 'very good knowledge'. However, no points are awarded for mother tongues. 

Yes. You can apply for as many sessions as you want.

You can declare all types of work experience, also holiday or student jobs, as well as jobs carried out on a casual basis only (e.g. in the evening, over the week-end, etc.).

The system allows you to indicate up to five work experiences.

Start with the longest one and put the following ones in the descending order of their duration.

If you have more, select the most relevant ones. Full-time volunteering activities or civic service may count as work experience and shall be supported by the same kind of proof as latter.

The duration of the pre-selection procedures depends heavily on the number of applications received, but it usually spans 10-12 weeks as of the closing date of the application period. At the end of this period, you will receive a notification by email and a message will be published in your online account. We encourage you to check your account regularly to avoid missing email notifications caused by spam filters.  

Please do not contact the Traineeships Office about this. Every session, between 10,000-15,000 (or even more) applications are introduced and it takes some time to process all of them.