Language immersion surpassed my expectations and incredible staff! May 28, 2017

By (Williams College) - abroad from 01/09/2016 to 05/23/2016 with

Sweet Briar College: JYF in Paris

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
The program was definitely worth while! I gained plenty of experience of executing personal goals in unfamiliar locations.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

There was a fair amount of class options with the Sweet Briar Program in Paris and there and great flexibility in enrolling in French Universities.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The administration is fantastic! They are super organized, always accessible, always eager to have conversations about how things are going along with your home, academic and leisurely life.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

There was no problem with safety, the family fed me extremely well with great French food!

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

It was very easy for me to immerse myself in the family's culture. I had to make a strong effort to connect with Parisian students (no surprise there) and I did have to make an effort to not aggregate with groups of American students that spoke English with one another.

* 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

The programs administration is hands down the best educational administration I have dealt with. They were extremely friendly and always willing to help.

Finances

* 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)

With a host family that provided breakfast and dinner (except one night per week), I was able to survive with a low budget. On average I would spend 5-7 Euros for Lunch throughout the week. By the end I also figured out to buy food from grocery stores and pack my own lunches for about 2 euros per lunch.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 40-70 Euros
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Read the comment above about going to grocery stores

Language

* 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

The program definitely encouraged the students to speak only French but most of the students spoke English amongst themselves.

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? One litterature course
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Go to French-English exchange events. They can be found throughout Facebook and a popular organization that runs events is Franglish. They host 3-5 nights of French English exchanges per week.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
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?
  • The administration
  • Faculty
  • Location
* What could be improved?
  • list of French activities
  • FB page connections
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Make an effort to go to events hosted by French organizations. Join a club or sport with other Parisians. Go to French-English languages exchanges because are very popular

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!