It’s Official!

Well, it’s official! I am going to be studying abroad this Winter in FRANCE! I will be leaving the first week in January and living in Western France in the town of Poitiers until June! I cannot describe how excited I am for this amazing opportunity for my education, future career, and just the personal experience itself. I will be attending the France Business School (ESCEM as it’s called in France), and will obtain my Advanced Certificate in International Marketing while I am there. As excited as I am for the educational aspect, I am even more enthused about the fact that I’ll be living in France for six months! I can’t wait to experience the culture, food, language, and the million other things that makes living in Europe simply amazing.

I spent my first two years of college at Macomb Community College and am now studying at the University of Michigan-Flint. I receive a few academic scholarships through UM-Flint that paid for my classes. Then, in mid-August, I received a call from the Osher Foundation saying I had be awarded a $5,000 scholarship through their program. Being that all of my classes were already paid for, the $5,000 can be applied to anything school related, so I decided to use it to study abroad!

Poitiers itself is a huge college town and has a large international program. Knowing I will be surrounded by other students in my position makes this entire process much more comforting. There is a school in Georgia and California that also has an exchange program with France Business School (FBS), so I know they’ll be other Americans there too! My classes will all be taught in English and at the end of my semester there I get to participate in a “company project” as part of the course requirements. Basically, I’ll take everything they taught me and get to help a French Company with a Marketing project. It will almost be like an internship, so when I get back to the states I can say that not only did I get a unique education, I also applied what I learned with a European company!

I’ve studied Spanish for years and now I’m learning French. Although Spain and France are geographically next to each other, their languages sound nothing alike (I was hoping for a US/Canada scenario… not the case)! You’ve heard of “Spanglish”… I’ve created a new language called “Spanch” – a twist on Spanish/French. All joking aside, I’m confident I’ll know enough French to get me from the airport in Paris, to the town of Poitiers. Once in Poitiers, I’ll start school, and immediately start taking French as a requirement of my program.  I’ve been listening to “Learn French in 10 days” in my car, and watching YouTube videos, but the best tool that’s helped me is an app on my phone called DuoLingo. It’s amazing. I highly recommend it for anyone trying to learn any language!

I’m so excited for this experience and will be sharing a lot along the way! If you’d like, you can sign up to receive emails anytime something is posted so you can keep tabs on me while in Europe (see tab on the right). Just make sure to confirm the link you receive in your email box to be officially signed up. I’d love to hear from you too! Click the “Contact Me” tab at the top of the page to send me an email. I would love to answer any/all questions and am always looking for new topics to write about! Most of all, thanks for the continuing support I’ve received from everyone- it means the world to me.  Au Revoir!

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