Find out more! 2012 Information Sessions
This Capstone course (3 credit hours) came to be as a result of UNI’s long term partnership with L’ École Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Rennes (ENSCR). Although originally developed to provide international exchange opportunities for students in the sciences, this program now reaches out to all students interested in broadening their worldview. All students, regardless of major are invited to apply.
Students will arrive in Rennes to spend 10 days touring the Brittany region. We will visit the historic walled city of St. Malo and Mont St. Michel, noted for being built on a tidal basin such that it is totally cut off from the mainland at high tide. We will also spend four days in Paris exploring its museums, monuments and cafes.
Rennes: Rennes is the capital of Bretagne (Brittany) which is one of the 26 administrative regions of France. It is a historically-rich French city, alive with the spirit of university students from all over the world.
Paris: By any standard, Paris is one of the great cities of the world, full of history and romance. Considered among the top three most important and influential cities in the world, the city is a bustling network of industry and culture.
While in Rennes, students will connect with faculty, staff and students from the Ecole Nationale Superieure de Chimie de Rennes (ENSCR).
Though the school is one of natural sciences, the interactions UNI students will have with the school will be more associated with culture and communication.
Dr. Anne Lair
Languages and Literatures: French
The purpose of this course is to help students understand and develop awareness of some the current cultural differences and bridges between France and America. As students learn about French and American cultural relations, they will further develop a sense of their own cultural identity as well as an awareness of cultural difference; they will be expected to hone their ability to think critically, write with clarity and precision, and appreciate complexity and nuance. We will place special emphasis on the ways in which history, sociology, culture and politics have shaped mutual cultural (mis)perceptions in both the United States and in France.
Since part of the course will take place in France, we will explore more or less ten topics. Then, each student will explore one of these issues in some greater depth (to be presented later orally). In all cases, it will be a goal to not only describe and discuss the issues, but also to provide some in-depth analysis regarding how such topics are viewed and/or addressed in France compared to the United States. To complete our in-class discussion, and have fruitful discussions, we will have occasionally guest speakers from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Rennes, our host while being in Rennes, France.
The course will unfold in three phases:
1) The preparatory phase will take place on the UNI campus; students will a) learn some useful language instruction in French, b) read and learn about geography AND history, c) interact with other students, and the professor and possibly with other native speakers of French, and d) prepare for logistical and travel plans.
2) The on-site phase will take place in Rennes (Brittany region) and Paris, the country’s capital. These two stops will allow students to directly interact with the people, places and artifacts of the French and Brittany cultures and gather evidence to be used in the write-ups. While being in Rennes, we will have class-room meeting, which will be more challenging to do on the same format in Paris
3) The wrap-up will consist of a two week period (biweekly meetings) after returning to the US where students will work individually on specific assignments (see below) and will then present it to the rest of the class.
During our meetings, students will make pre-proposals centering on their selected topic and the work-product they intend to present for academic credit. Selected readings will be assigned and discussed. Several of the following topics, some general, some specific, are among those that will be addressed in this course. Effort will be made to match student interest with the topics considered.
Accommodation & Meals
Students will stay with a host family while in Rennes, as it is the best way to learn about French culture and understand cultural differences. While in Paris, we will stay in a youth hostel, St Christopher, in the 19th arrondissement.
The total estimated cost for this program is $3,500-$4,500.
- Round-trip airfare
- UNI Tuition and Fees for 3-credits
- Housing while abroad
- Transportation while abroad
- All meals in Rennes
- Group meals in Paris
- Cultural activities
- Personal Expenses
Students pay UNI tuition and fees (in-state or out-of-state), the $65 application fee, and the study abroad administration fee to participate.
Tales From Abroad
"The past two weeks were the best time of my life. I got to see so many things and meet so many people. I couldn’t have asked for a better trip. It was also very interesting to see how different life is in another country and to experience their culture."
Lindsay Sperfslage, Summer 2011