Maria Perez Franco '20
Columbia Reid Hall Paris
Columbia Reid Hall Paris
Ask me about being an FGLI student abroad!
Because I went abroad…
I have grown considerably and have a newfound sense of self-assuredness. I thought that going to school in New England as a Texan had provided me with a sense of independence, but I feel like my time abroad showed me what true independence is. From having to navigate the Paris metro system to having to communicate with those around me in a language I had only studied at school, my time abroad was like diving into the deep end. I know that I can be a pretty shy person, but I was thankful that I didn’t really know anyone going into the program because I was able to challenge myself and make friends, and lifelong bonds, with students from other universities. I definitely struggled along the way, but I was so proud of myself for dealing with the difficulty of living in another country and knowing I could overcome these challenges. Studying abroad helped me realize my own potential while also having the best five months of my life, and I know I’ll cherish these memories forever.
Ask me about….
- Taking financial aid abroad
- Studying in another language
- Being a student leader while abroad
- Living with a host family
Being a woman of color abroad
Study Abroad Highlights…
- I was able to take a course called Black Paris while I was abroad in which we got to read some really interesting pieces written by black authors who had lived in Paris. One of the authors we got to read was Maryse Condé and we actually got to have a round-table talk with her!
- For our final project, my French language class was able to create a walking tour around Paris featuring streets named after famous women. We filmed ourselves doing the tour and it was a great way to wrap up the class.
- I took an economics class in order to get concentration credit and my two midterms and final all consisted of an in-class written essay. I was so impressed with the fact that I could actually write these in-class essays in French and discuss economic terms in another language!
- I loved the fact that most of my classes were at Reid Hall and with other Reid Hall students. Some of my favorite memories are just of us eating lunch in the beautiful courtyard between classes and enjoying the view.
- I was able to take a cheese-making class and it was by far one of the best experiences of my life!
Other International Experience...
- Summer 2017: Harvard Summer School in Recife, Brazil
- Winter Break 2018: DRCLAS Mentoring and Language Acquisition in Brazil (MLAB) in São Paulo, Brazil
- Summer 2018: DRCLAS Summer Internship Program in Buenos Aires, Argentina