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Big 10: Montpellier, Integrated
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Loren Baseler

Liberal Arts Major(s): English, French and Francophone Studies
Hometown: Grove City, Pennsylvania

What was the best part of your experience?

The best part of my experience is living here. I have experienced so much during my short time here, and traveling is so easy! The best part of my experience, though, is the simplicity of life now. When I first got here, everything was significantly more difficult. Even going to a restaurant made me nervous and stressed. Now, I have a routine with the bakery closest to me, and the people at my favorite lunch spot know my order. Being able to live here independently and feel comfortable in this environment is the best feeling that I've had over here.

Having to use French every time I go somewhere has also helped me with fluency, and I believe that living in France has helped me more than any class could.

How did this experience impact you academically?

I was able to find courses over here that easily transfer to my Penn State degree, which is really helpful as I will be graduating next year. My knowledge of French has also increased dramatically. I'm in the integrated program, so I take courses with regular French students. I am expected to understand the professor and do the same work that students who have been speaking French their whole lives are doing. This idea was very intimidating, but now I can understand nearly all of my professors' lectures. Having to use French every time I go somewhere has also helped me with fluency, and I believe that living in France has helped me more than any class could.

How will this experience impact your career goals?

I am now considering participating in the TAPIF program which would allow me to teach English at a French school. I hadn't considered living in France before I studied abroad, but now I think that I would really enjoy teaching English in a different environment than the one I am used to at home.

How has the Paterno Fellows Program had an impact on this experience?

The Paterno Fellows Program requires you to study abroad or participate in an internship in order to graduate. Because I am majoring in both English and French, it made sense for me to study abroad in France, which is something I always wanted to do. The Paterno Fellows Program requirement gave me the push to make it happen.

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