Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Summer in Paris

View from the dorms in the Latin Quarter

This summer I studied abroad for 6 weeks in Paris, which was an experience that was all that I could have wanted yet could have never expected.  As a French minor, I felt that it was necessary to take what I had learned inside the classroom and apply it to the real world.  This desire was definitely fostered by Fordham’s mission to educate the whole person where learning is not confined within the walls of a classroom.  With the help of the Office of Study Abroad as well as guidance from faculty in the French Department, I found the program that was right for me.  During my 6 weeks I took 2 classes – French Culture through Cinema, and Art History – that would transfer back at Fordham as 8 credits towards my minor.  After months of finding the perfect program and restless nights leading up to my departure, I finally arrived in the city of light!

My first, and one of my favorite memories of my summer abroad was my first French Ferris wheel ride.  In “Les Jardins de Tuileries,” the garden beside “le musée de Louvre” has a small carnival that opens each morning and closes at dusk.  I was so surprised to see such a carnival with games, fun houses, slides, a giant Ferris wheel, and flying swings, right beside one of the world’s most impressive art museums!  On my first full day in Paris, I went along with several of my new friends in my program to ride the Ferris wheel, where we were able to look over the entire city of Paris.  It was a truly breathtaking moment as I was taken completely by surprise at my first introduction to this magical city.
Views from the Ferris Wheel!

Caught the sunset on the London Eye
Throughout the trip I was required to visit museums such as the Louvre, Marmotton, D’Orsay, Pompidou, and Rodin for my Art History course as well as watch classic and contemporary French films.  I even was able to visit the quant city of Chartres which houses one of the oldest Catholic Cathedrals, and even went to London for a weekend! After studying movements from neoclassicism to post-modernism, training my ear to understand the countless films I had to watch, and enjoying the Parisian ambiance, I felt by the end of the trip that I could have stayed there permanently.  This is the power of expanding your global network!

I recommend anyone to study abroad and make the experience their own because it can truly be life changing!  

A video taken from Bastille Day, France's Independence Day

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