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All blog posts are by University of Michigan students who have participated in a CGIS program. The following blogs are students studying abroad in France. 

Spring/Summer 2018

Going Abroad: An Unparalleled Opportunity to Learn about Yourself by getting Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

The opportunity to study abroad this summer in Grenoble, France was a phenomenal experience that had a profound impact on me. Articulating (as best I can) the origin and subsequent impact of this perspective-shift was important to me so that I would not forget all the things that I learned, could appropriately acknowledge what I experienced, and hopefully convince (or at least reassure) people who are either already abroad or considering travelling abroad that it is 110% worth it.

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Winter 2018

Ryan reflects on his semester in Paris

Everyone has a dream vacation. They imagine visiting a city or country that they’ve romanticized above all else. For some, this ideal getaway conjures images of white sand beaches and a cerulean blue sea. For others, it’s trekking through the dense urban jungle of a sprawling metropolis. For example, my mom wouldn’t hesitate to pick the Mojave Desert of the American Southwest, and Julia Roberts even managed to lump together three iconic destinations: Italy, India and Bali in Ryan Murphy’s film adaptation of Eat, Pray, Love. By contrast, my dream vacation has always been relatively singular: Paris.

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Academic Year 2017-2018

Hannah reflects on her year in Paris 

Three. Two. One. I squealed in excitement, as celebration outside soon engulfed the sound of my own. I was here, in Paris, for the New Year’s countdown. My friend and I decided to stay home, as I was only 5’4” and she was 5’5”, and we deemed that it would be impossible for us to look at any monument clearly in person. Watching the countdown from a live video, we had on both Eiffel Tower lighting up the sky and Arc de Triomphe with jumping 2018 on its façade. This marked the midpoint of my study abroad program.

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Fall 2017

Danielle reflects on her semester in Paris 

My second day in Paris I had so much nervous energy and knew I had to do some exploring before classes at Sciences Po started in the next week. There were only five people from Michigan at Sciences Po this semester so I reached out to them in the groupchat we created to see if anyone wanted to explore. I ended up heading to the Arc de Triomphe with one of the girls from Michigan who was also here on exchange. We had a great time and got to chat about the experience of planning the whole study abroad trip and the huge aspect of self reliance that comes with type of program. I was happy to learn from her that not only was there a huge group chat with many of the fall 2017 exchange students at Sciences Po, but that some of them were having a get together on the Seine to meet people before classes started.

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