IES: Paris, French Studies Program
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Bram Nealon

Liberal Arts Majors: French and Francophone Studies, Philosophy
Minor: Art History
Hometown: State College, Pennsylvania
Experience Time: Fall 2021

Give us a brief summary of your experience?

I am studying abroad in Paris, France in IES's language immersion program. All of the classes and communication are entirely in French, with the ultimate goal of approaching some degree of fluency. I am taking classes about the French language, translation, French film, and French art. I am also taking a class in aesthetics at the Sorbonne.

How did this experience impact you academically?

The French academic system is quite different from that of the United States, and it has been enlightening to gain a different perspective on the educational process and my own scholastic life. The French university system, grading standards, classroom expectations, and student-professor relationship were entirely new to me, and I'd like to think that I am now a more well-rounded and international student.

"Studying abroad will open up many francophone career paths to me that were wholly closed off beforehand."

How will this experience impact your career goals?

While I am certainly not fluent, I can now consistently hold conversations in French with native French speakers. My French has vastly improved over the course of the semester. I can confidently add "French speaker" as a marketable skill to my résumé, entirely due to this experience. Studying abroad will open up many francophone career paths to me that were wholly closed off beforehand. For example, upon graduating, I plan to teach English in a francophone country.

How has the College of the Liberal Arts helped you to find and/or succeed in this experience (e.g., adviser, faculty, staff, enrichment funds, etc.)?

The enrichment funds provided to me by the College of the Liberal Arts has made it considerably easier to afford life in Paris. I will forever be thankful that the College has made such an impactful experience possible.

For more information on global opportunities for Liberal Arts students, visit our website.
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