Trams, Trains, and Planes (But Mostly Trams)

Ok I might have lied. This is not a blog post where I talk about planes at all actually, or trains for that matter. Although both of the latter are very useful and common modes of transportation for traveling long distances across the country, I am excited to write about one of my greatest surprises …

Apply, Apply Again

I’ve always been an organized person, just take a look at my planner! Since my first, school-given agenda in 2010 I’ve kept track of deadline after deadline, even notes for things as simple as ‘text Mom!’, to help me keep track of my days. In my experience, if it’s not written down it will quickly …

Socks & Suitcases: Preparing to Study Abroad

48 hours.  48 hours until I say Au revoir! to the suburbs of Chicago and depart for Nantes, France.  Well, maybe 54 hours is more accurate since I have a connecting flight in Texas, but my shock is the same. I’m leaving my parents, brother, three cats, and tortoise to travel over 4,000 miles to …

A Weekend in Paris

One of the many pros to studying abroad in Europe is that you are so close to other European countries. My flight this past weekend to Paris took less time than it would take me to fly from Michigan to Florida. In my program, IES classes are 90 minutes Monday through Thursday which gives us …

Loire Valley: A Weekend of Castles

One of the cool parts about studying abroad are the class trips. They’re not your typical field trips most of us remember from high school–they’re historical, wonderful, beautiful weekends in places like Loire Valley, Normandy or Versailles. This past weekend, we went to Loire Valley. It’s a stretch on the Loire River in the center …

The Last Week of First Semester: A Video Recap

Here’s a recap “goodbye” of all the incredible friends I made last year and the host family I stayed with last semester in Paris. Spring semester is already off to a great start, and I can’t wait to get to know all of the new students here on campus!

Soundtrack of Sirens: Paris’ Largest Industrial Walkout Since 1995

Let’s talk about a French stereotype: strikes. If you don’t know, the French have a reputation for constantly striking against the government–it’s a right protected by their constitution and it’s been going on majorly since 1789, a.k.a., the French Revolution. As with everything in France, there’s clearly a long and complicated history when it comes …

Home At Last

  I thought that when I got home from studying abroad, everything was going to feel different. That my friends and family would look a bit older. That there would be many events I missed out on or didn’t know about. That I would accidentally slip some French into my English. I know I was …

9 Days Left in Paris

I have nine days left in Paris until I go home for Christmas. I know what you’re probably thinking. Isn’t this the girl that’s staying abroad for the whole year? What does she have to worry about? And you’re right. I feel extremely lucky to be able to go back to the winter wonderland of …

Balancing School and Sight Seeing While Studying Abroad

Everyone has different goals when studying abroad, and it’s important to know that there’s not one right or wrong way to do it. Many of my peers here in Paris chose this city because it’s centrally located in Europe, giving them the opportunity to travel just about every weekend to a new place. They’ve been …