Design verification interns in Serbia

Design Verification Engineer Interns – Frenchmen in Belgrade

ADVANS Group being international, we have multiplied bridges between our entities over the years: expatriate French engineers working in Serbia at the beginnings of ELSYS Eastern Europe (EEE), Serbian engineers joining customer teams in France, project teams for key international customers set up between several Serbian and French design centers etc.

In this article, we wanted to shed light on another type of cooperations: French students doing an internship period in Serbia. We discussed with Mahel from ELSYS Design Lyon (internship at EEE in 2018), Julien from ELSYS Design Rennes (internship at AViSTO Eastern Europe in 2019) and Ayoub from ELSYS Design Grenoble (in Serbia at the time of the interview).

A Design Verification Internship in Serbia: from « Why not? » to « Because »

A mobility period (an internship or a study period) has always been encouraged for French engineering students and since 2022, the CTI (Commission for engineering titles) even made it mandatory.

Mahel, from Polytech Nice Sophia, and Julien, from INSA Rennes, both needed to spend 8 weeks abroad as a minimum; it is 6 weeks for Ayoub, from Grenoble INP Phelma.

Mahel and Julien were not specifically looking for an internship in Serbia. On the opposite side, Ayoub, who wants to become a UVM engineer, had heard from his teachers and past internship supervisors that Serbia was renowned for his UVM engineers. So when he saw the UVM internship ad from ELSYS Design with a training period in Serbia, he knew he wanted to get it!

Design Verification Internship academy

ELSYS Eastern Europe not only proposes internships, it developed over the years a true UVM Academy with lessons, exercises and mentoring.

In 2018, Mahel followed the 3 weeks lesson period from France, before doing the practical part in Serbia.

In 2023, Ayoub will stay 6 weeks in Belgrade for the complete training session: « I joined a group of 15 trainees from Serbia. We have daily programs with lessons to follow, tasks to do (for example exercises to prepare), questions & answers sessions with experienced UVM engineers. It is very well organized ».

For Julien, an embedded software engineer, it was more of an individual internship. He joined the AViSTO Eastern Europe team, and worked on the configuration of a Linux kernel and developed several drivers.

From colleagues to friends

Julien quickly made friends with the engineers from his team. They regularly spent time together outside of work, and even spent several weekends together visiting Novi Sad or the Golubac fortress. Julien comments: « I went to Serbia in 4L, which was very useful to visit the many magnificent natural sites as they were difficult to access without a car.

Once, following our guide, a pebble destroyed my 4L lighthouse. I thought using tape as a temporary repair would do, but my colleague told me not to worry as according to him, Soviet-era cars had the same lighthouses. Indeed, he found one for me pretty easily. »

Mahel, on his side, reminds of a rich group of students, with different ages, backgrounds (hardware and software), and gender parity. Coming back to France was not that easy: « I had a twinge of sadness because I had integrated well into the team, with very warm Serbian people. » He mentions Dejan, from the Belgrade IT team, « super nice and who loves France ».


Both Mahel and Julien strongly recommend going to Serbia for an internship.

Ayoub, when talking with him, was not homesick at all: « I feel very well. I even noticed I had a Lidl supermarket close to my home, so I can buy my groceries as I would do in France! »

Once he is back in France, he will be working on a training project until the end of his internship period, mentored by ELSYS Eastern Europe engineers.