Tag Archive for: Paris

Tanya Moronge – Paris Management Internship

Tanya & Escargot

Tanya & Escargot

Interned at Reputation Squad in public relations, Spring 2015.

I studied abroad in Paris Spring 2015 and was lucky enough to live in the 16th arrondissement. I interned for a company known as Reputation Squad and they work to repair people’s e-reputation. My main tasks were writing articles for clients and proofreading/translating.

I Learned: First, that I am capable of being independent and that living in a new city is not that scary. Also, in order to really enjoy your time abroad you have to go in with zero expectations other than living outside of your comfort zone.

What Surprised Me: What surprised me the most is that I did not anticipate how hard the first few weeks were going to be. Adjusting to a new city, new culture, and new language definitely takes some time, and you need a good support system. Soon after that, the new city becomes your home.

Hardest Part: Adjusting to Paris during those first few weeks was definitely the hardest part of my experience.

Best Part: The best part was being able to call Paris my home when all my friends would visit, and I got the chance to take them to my favorite spots in the city. Also, the extensive knowledge on wine and cheese that you get definitely comes in handy.

My Tips: Go out of your comfort zone. Try to talk to non-BU people, and try to meet locals. Try escargot and steak-tartare if you’re REALLY daring! If doable, make sure you travel and befriend your professors. Talk to the people in your arrondissement in the patisseries or supermarkets, they offer great practice and can tell you the best places to check out (and the best pastries and recipes). Impromptu trips are the best ones. Don’t forget to explore Paris and France in general; don’t just visit the bordering countries. Try having a non-American Express credit card, very few places take them.

Hidden (or not so hidden but still great) Gems: Go to Rue Mouffetard, which is great for restaurants and cool hang out spots (piano vache). Get lunch outside at Centre Pompidou and just explore the Marais for the best falafels and outdoor seating areas. Picnics with friends at parks or by the seine (Pont des Arts, Jardin du Luxemborg, Jardin des Tuileries, Champ de Mars) are great. Grands Boulevard has great restaurants and bars, one of them being Bouillon Chartier, which offers very cheap, decent French food and a great atmosphere.   Go to the markets for the best seafood and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Honestly, there are so many things I loved about Paris that I wish I could list and even many more that I wish I had done while I was there. The best advice I can give is to make sure that you do something every day because even though it might not seem like it, your days there are limited. You want to “profitez bien de Paris.” Make sure to explore with people and don’t be afraid to explore/travel alone. Try to do most tourist things at the beginning of your semester because warm weather brings in many tourists and long lines.

Kate Walsh, Paris Internship and Geneva & London International Conflict Resolution

LondonInterned for a small, French management-consulting firm in Paris, Spring 2013. Also studied International Conflict Resolution Program in Geneva & London during Summer 2013.

I Learned: Even though I’d taken French languages courses up to the 300 level at BU, I couldn’t really speak the language until I had to take courses with Parisian professors and haggle over fruit prices with vendors.

I also learned that when all else fails: charades.

Comparing/Contrasting My Work Experiences: The business I interned for in Paris was trying to expand globally, so they had a number of interns from very different backgrounds. Almost all of the businesses I’ve worked for in the US have only had American employees, which leads to a relatively limited perspective in the workplace.  I’ve really only worked with small businesses, but my experiences with coworkers have been extremely positive in both France and America.  Side note: for anyone who will be living in France, the French are much more direct about topics that Americans consider controversial like politics or religion. Don’t take offense!

Hardest Part: Once I was accused of stealing an apple from Monoprix (basically the French Target) by an over-zealous security guard. It was traumatizing.

Best Part: The best part of being abroad was making connections with both the other students on my program and fellow travelers. I’m still in contact with people I met in random European hostels!


Bronwen Ambridge, Paris Internship Program

Paris Pic 1Interned in fashion marketing with Jasmin Santanen, Summer 2013

Internship: I worked for a designer, Jasmin Santanen, who designs luxury apparel for women by combining Nordic simplicity and Parisian elegance. Her first couture collection was presented in Paris in 2007 for which she was recognized with the “Elle Style Award” for best collection of the year.

As an intern, I took on a variety of tasks such as working on brand development presentations, researching material and compiling summary documents.

What I learned: Living in a French-speaking environment allows you to experience the French culture and language in a way you never could in the classroom. I became more accustomed to hearing French everyday and picked up colloquial sayings. I enjoyed French customs and culture such as French cuisine, museums, beautiful gardens, walking along the River Seine and stunning architecture. Studying abroad is essential when you are learning a different language because these are experiences you cannot get in school.

Compared to other work experiences: When studying international management, it is important to understand all perspectives, so it is beneficial to have work experience internationally. In Paris, I learned the European perspective on fashion, which would have been hard to do working in North America. Paris is one of the centers of the fashion industry, and, therefore, an excellent place to have work experience if you are interested in pursuing this field.

Hardest Part: When people spoke to me in French, I understood them. The most difficult part was not being afraid to make mistakes especially when communicating with the locals. Although this was challenging at times, constantly speaking French was how I improved.

Best Part: One thing I would recommend is to live with a French family, as this was one of the best parts of my experience. For this program, you have the option to live in dormitory style housing or with a host family. My host family was welcoming and friendly. They always spoke to me in French, which helped improve my language speaking skills immensely. Overall, they really made me feel at home while living abroad.

Another great part of my time abroad was my internship. For anyone who is interested in fashion, I would suggest working in Paris. I worked closely with my boss, the designer, throughout my internship, and I had a wonderful experience.

Karli Abshier, Paris Internship Program

Interned in public auditing with JPA International, Spring 2013

Internship: I interned at JPA International, a network of independent public auditors that spans across forty countries.  JPA International is headquartered in Paris and serves clients all across the globe with audit, consulting, and corporate finance. Their major clients are French corporations, specializing in French culture and the arts, as well as international companies desiring to expand their business into the French market.

I Learned: From living abroad, I was able to experience French culture to the fullest by living with a French host family. There I was able to live like a Parisian and begin to understand the utmost importance of French culture and cuisine.

From studying abroad, I learned typical French sayings and common phrases that I would not have been able to learn from an American professor. My French professors taught me practical French, not textbook French, that I was able to apply to my internship as well as my daily life in Paris. Additionally, I was able to experience and utilize what I learned in the classroom daily, which was especially rewarding for my art history course where I was able to visit the museums that housed the pieces I studied in class.

From interning abroad, I learned the importance of learning a second language. It is one thing to study French in a classroom, but it is completely different speaking French in a work environment with French colleagues. Learning French gave me the opportunity to experience the French work culture and international business, something I now have a passion for.

Comparing/Contrasting My Work Experiences: Working in France I learned how much the French value a work-life balance. My lunch breaks were normally an hour to an hour and half long, where I sat and conversed with my colleagues about their lives, French culture and life in Paris. My colleagues knew the balance of working hard during the day to enjoy their evenings and weekends, which I know is not always the case in the US.

Hardest Part: The most difficult part of my experience was getting to the point in my French speaking where I was able to comprehend everything that was said to me and also be one hundred percent comfortable speaking French with locals, not just my American friends.

Best Part: The best part of my experience was experiencing French culture and being able to use what I have been studying for the past four years. Also, my internship was an unforgettable experience that was extremely helpful for my future career.