The Netherlands (IFMSA-The Netherlands) - Groningen
Orthopedics, Cardio-thoracic surgery, Transplantion-center, Dermatology
All year except September and December
For specific info please contact
For specific info please contact
LEO Groningen
scope.groningen database
Groningen Groningen

Groningen, capital of the eponymous province in the northern part of Holland, is a lively city that has much to offer in terms of culture and events, beautiful historic monuments like the Martini Tower, great shopping districts for a wonderful shopping spree, and excellent restaurants. Groningen has the youngest average population of The Netherlands because half of the people in the city are students. Groningen should definitely be on your to-do list!


The internships in Groningen are at the UMCG. This is the University Medical Center of Groningen. The medical center is affiliated with the University of Groningen. It is one of the largest hospitals in the world, offering supraregional tertiary care to the northern part of the Netherlands. The medical center employs almost 17,000 people and numbers almost 1400 beds. It is located in the center of Groningen. It is also one of the largest centers for transplant surgery in the world. Organ transplant operations of all possible kinds are carried out at the UMCG, including combined transplants of multiple organs in one operation.

The University of Groningen located in the city of Groningen, was founded in 1614. It is one of the oldest universities in the Netherlands as well as one of its largest. Since its inception more than 200,000 students have graduated.

In April 2013, according to the results of the International Student Barometer, the University of Groningen, for the third time in a row, has been voted the best University of the Netherlands. In 2014 the university celebrated its 400th anniversary. The University of Groningen has ten faculties, nine graduate schools, 27 research centres and institutes, and more than 175 degree programmes.


UMCG's multidisciplinary Research Programmes are organised in five Research Institutes. Each Institute covers a specific part of the UMCG research area. By establishing numerous international research projects and strategic alliances over the past, research within the Institutes bridged national boundaries. Especially for the UMCG focus "Active and Healty Ageing" international collaboration is required and prepares the UMCG to contribute to this global challenge. For every UMCG Research Programme the relevance for Healthy Ageing is defined.

Regarding the training and education of future scientists the five Research Institutes collaborate in the Graduate School of Medical Sciences assuring the incorporation of state of the art scientific know-how.

  1. GUIDE Institute: Chronic Diseases and Drug Exploration
  2. BCN-BRAIN Institute: Behavioural and Cognitive Neurosciences
  3. SHARE Institute: Science in Healthy Ageing and healthcaRE
  4. W.J.Kolff Institute: Biomaterials
  5. CRCG Institute: Fundamental, Clinical and Translational Cancer Research
Specific SCORE projects:
  • Innate immunity and tissue remodeling in progressive renal failure (Experimental Nefrology)
  • Testing cpmpounds that can selectively kill aneuploid cells (Cell Biology)
  • Heart ROCQ (Cardiothoracic Surgery)
  • Thoracic organ preservation/resuscitation for TX Surgery (Cardiothoracic Surgery)

Exchange students are provided with money that can be spend on boarding. The exchange student has the choice to either put the money on their card which the UMCG provides them with (with this card, the student can buy lunch or dinner for a reduced price in het hospital) or they can take the money and pay cash to eat outside of the hospital. Next to this, the student will have an amount of money that can be spend on the social program. This money will be kept by the IFMSA.

Supermarkets open at 8:00 AM and close at 22:00

We recommend you to go to Albert Heijn (AH) or Jumbo, because they have a bigger assortment.


Exchange students are acommodated in student houses in Groningen. This means that you will have your own room, but the bathroom, toilet and kitchen are usually shared with other students. But on the other hand, you can eat together with your Dutch roommates and have a nice time together. Groningen is not a very big city, therefore everything is close by. You will never have to travel far to get to the hospital and other nice places in Groningen. A bike will be provided by IFMSA-Groningen, if you would want one during your stay. Or you can use the public transport if you prefer.


We recommend you to use a bike while travelling in Groningen. Most of the time it is faster, you are not bound to timetables of buses, plus you get to see more of Groningen. We will offer you a bike for transportation here in Groningen. You will have to pay a 20 euro deposit.

However, if you decide to use the bus, we recommend you to use the following website: This website offers you an easy way to find the right bus or train to your destination and tells you the exact times as well. It is especially useful when you travel to other cities than Groningen.

The train

To give you an idea of how long it takes to travel from Groningen to another city in the Netherlands, here is an overview:           

Amsterdam CS: 2 hours and 7 minutes

Rotterdam CS: 2 hours and 39 minutes

Leiden CS: 2 hours and 27 minutes

The Hague: 2 hours and 36 minutes

Utrecht: 1 hour and 55 minutes

Maastricht: 4 hours and 8 minutes

Leeuwarden: 35 minutes


If you are visiting Groningen during the summer months you will be able to take part in the National Social Program (NSP), which is organized four times a year. The NSP always takes place during the weekend so you don’t have to worry about it interfering with your internship!

Even if you are not able to attend one of the NSPs, the Local Committee members will do their best to help you integrate and take advantage of the amazing student life in Groningen. We will organize fun activities such as traditional Dutch dinners or  just a night out to discover the wonders of one of the biggest cities in the North of the Netherlands. Whether you’re looking for a quiet night at the cinema with your friends or a night of drinking away your work stress, Groningen’s diverse nightlife can offer relief.


Sightseeing in Groningen

Grote Markt (the Great Market) – This is the central square in the center of Groningen. On Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays you will find a food market here. On Thursdays there is a non-food market.

The Martinitoren (The Martinitower) – With its 96.8 meters, it stands tall at the North-East side of the Grote Markt. The inhabitants of Groningen nickname it “d’ Olle Grieze” (the old Grey one).

The Martini churchyard – This churchyard lies at the foot of the Martinitoren. You can find a lot of green and statues in the churchyard.

The Prinsenhof – A building surrounding the Martini churchyard. The first parts have been built in 1040 and it has served many purposes throughout the ages.

The city hall – In the west of the Grote Markt you can find the city hall.

Vismarkt (Fish market) – The Vismarkt is the second big central square in the center of Groningen. It’s very close to the Grote Markt. On Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays you will find fruit and fish sold there.

The Korenbeurs (The Grain Exchange) – The Korenbeurs can be found at the west side of the Vismarkt. It is a neoclassicistic building that was finished in 1865. It served as a grain market. Nowadays it holds a supermarket, Albert Heijn. It’s the only building in Groningen in the top 100 most valuable Dutch UNESCO-Monuments.

The Aa-kerk (the Aa-church) – The Aa-kerk is located behind the Korenbeurs. The tower is 76 meters high. Nowadays it serves as an exhibition hall.

Herestraat – This is the busiest shopping street in Groningen.

The Academiegebouw (The Academy building) – The current Academiegebouw is the third build Academiegebouw in Groningen. The first building (build in 1614) was demolished in 1846 because of the poor condition. The second building was built in 1850 and burned down in 1906. The current Academiegebouw was finished in 1909. Here you can find a live webcam of the Academiegebouw.

The Noorderplantsoen (the Northern plantation) – The Noorderplantsoen is a big park on the north side of the old city. During the summer you will find many people here enjoying the sun.

The Universitair Medisch Centrum Groningen – The UMCG is the academic hospital of the University of Groningen.

The Groninger Museum – The Groninger Museum lies on an artificial island on the south side of the old city center. It is an Arts museum.

The railway station – Across the Groninger museum lays the central railway station.

Stadsschouwburg – The main theatre house of Groningen. It was restored in 1994.


We recommend you to use a bike while travelling in Groningen. Most of the time it is faster, you are not bound to time tables of buses, plus you get to see more of Groningen. However, if you decide to use the bus, we recommend you to use the following website: This website offers you an easy way to find the right bus or train to your destination and tells you the exact times as well. It is especially useful when you travel to other cities than Groningen.