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.