France: Paris Middlebury
Paris is the capital city of France, and what many consider to be the cultural capital of Europe. The “City of Light” is home to countless museums, gardens, churches, and monuments. Walking down one of the broad boulevards offers a lesson in Parisian architectural movements, while a stroll down a narrow cobblestone street provides a glimpse into the city’s centuries-old history. Today Paris remains influential in politics, economics, education, art, and fashion, making the capital a major global city.
The Middlebury College School in Paris is located on the right bank in the eighth arrondissement within walking distance of Place de la Concorde and les Champs-Élysées. Established in 1949, the Middlebury program is designed for students who wish to improve greatly their French language skills while having a slightly more independent experience. Courses are taught in French at Middlebury’s Centre Madeleine, though students may take no more than two courses at the center. Participants take the rest of their courses at one of the local universities including: l’Université de Paris I, III, and IV, l’Institut Catholique, and École Normale de Musique. Students may also choose to enroll full time at l’Institut d’Études Politiques de Paris, where they take all of their classes.
Spring semester: early January to mid-June
Fields of Study
French culture, language, and literature, art history, computer science, economics, European studies, film, geography, history, international relations, math, musicology, philosophy, political science, religion, sociology, and theatre.
Completion of five semesters of college-level French or equivalent, including one content course. 9.0 GPA in French, 9.0 GPA in student’s major, and 8.0 GPA overall. All students are expected to enroll in a French course the semester prior to the term abroad.
Number of students
Approximately 5 Pomona students; total program approximately 30 per semester.
The program begins with an orientation and a non-credit preliminary course in French language. Middlebury administers a language proficiency exam to determine what language course students will take during the semester. All semester-long students must take a French language course at the Centre Madeleine at either the intermediate high or advanced level. The language course includes a cultural immersion component, and students may choose from several options including a language partner, cooking classes, and volunteer work. Students may choose to take two other courses at the Centre Madeleine. The remaining courses are taken at one of the local universities. The Middlebury center staff includes an academic advisor to help students choose their university courses. Middlebury also offers students the opportunity to complete a credit-bearing internship. Pomona students take the equivalent of 5 Middlebury credits for a total of 4 Pomona credits.
In addition to the academic program, Middlebury organizes excursions in and around Paris and one overnight excursion. In the spring semester, this overnight trip has usually been to chateaus in the Loire Valley or to Monet’s garden.
There is no P/NC option on this program.
Homestays and international student foyers. Pomona provides a room and board allowance.