Kathryn Peake '10
Major: French

I spent a year abroad in Paris, studying with the Goucher Paris Program in the autumn, and IFE in the spring. Paris is a magnificent city, and even after a year of living there, I never felt any less in awe of it. The city is so culturally accessible, and is a great place to be a student; most museums are free for young people and students, and there are always discount tickets to plays and to the cinema.

The French language classes at the Sorbonne that I took my first semester did wonders for my understanding of the language. I spent both semesters interning for the feminist organization Ni Putes Ni Soumises, an organization that fights violence against women, and promotes women's rights as universal human rights. As an intern, I helped lead education programs for high school and middle school students, and worked on translations and the organization of events. I was also able to participate in events involving international human rights activists and some of France's most well known feminists. During the second part of my internship, I aided in a study of access to reproductive healthcare for women in Paris's ghettoized suburbs. Doing the data collection for the project enabled me not only to see another face of the country that no tourist sees, but also to engage with people living there.

During my time as a student of both GPP and IFE, I formed lasting friendships with both French people and individuals from other countries, and was a full participant in French society. My year abroad was unforgettable.