Not Perfect but Very Close August 01, 2023

By (International Politics and Economics, Middlebury College) - abroad from 01/03/2023 to 05/17/2023 with

Middlebury Schools Abroad: Middlebury in Paris

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
My French language skills improved a lot and I think my worldview/cultural exposure developed significantly as well. It was certainly worthwhile.

Review Photos

Middlebury Schools Abroad: Middlebury in Paris Photo Middlebury Schools Abroad: Middlebury in Paris Photo

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

Though things were not always perfect (spent a lot of money, strikes and protests in the area affected daily life, etc), I still had an incredible experience overall.


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Paris is expensive and even looking for cheap options I easily spent over 100 euros per week on food and other necessities. I kept the rating at three stars instead of going lower because it was overall still more affordable than paying for room and board on campus at Middlebury.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? About 150 euros
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Buy food in large portions (pasta, meat, etc.) and cook for yourself when you can


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Intermediate
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? French 224
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Expose yourself to the language as much as possible and make yourself use it. It's okay to make mistakes; they only help you improve.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Professors at Middlebury
  • Independence/Freedom
  • Housing situation
* What could be improved?
  • Communication with local universities an their professors
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Language immersion is not an easy thing to jump into, and you should be prepared to be uncomfortable. That being said, it is worth the initial discomfort for the improvements you will make.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

EU: Socialization of Conflicts

Course Department: History
Instructor: Marion Gaillard
Instruction Language: French
Comments: Mme. Gaillard was an excellent professor. I learned a lot about the European Union, its history, and its culture, throughout this fascinating and engaging course. Mme. Gaillard was very friendly and it was a pleasure to learn from her every week. Additionally, our class trip to Strasbourg was a lot of fun and very informative.
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A
Course Name/Rating:

Intermediate-Advanced French

Course Department: French
Instructor: Patrick Guedon
Instruction Language: French
Comments: Patrick was a phenomenal professor. I learned so much French working with him over the semester, and I really enjoyed every class. He is friendly, funny, and really cared about all of his students.
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A