Language education has been an essential part of my education and life as a whole. Studying and eventually mastering French at Florida International University has allowed me a number of opportunities that I could have never otherwise accessed. Having emerged nearly fluent from the French Language and Literature program I was able to have a very formative internship at the French Consulate in Miami and eventually leverage much of the knowledge I gained there to attend the prestigious Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris (Sciences Po) where I completed a bilingual Masters programs and made life-long friends from all over the world. Not only did the “Worlds Ahead” Modern Languages faculty nurture and grow my love for the French language, but along the way, they also taught me broader lessons on crossing cultural divides to better understand our global society.
Mirtha Soto, Master of Int'l Public Management 2013, Sciences Po, Paris
Being a French major was one of the most inspirational decisions that I had ever made in my life. As much as "le verlan," la Môme, and Monsieur Hugo supplemented my French cultural repertoire, the life lessons that came along with such an underestimated area of study were what meant the most to me. Being a French major prepared me for my internship at the Consulate General of France in Miami,which in turn prepared me to live and work in the Hexagonal country for seven months,exchanging knowledge and kindness with the next generation of enthusiastic learners; I now possess a lifetime's worth of immeasurably satisfying memories. There are not enough words in my vocabulary to express my undying gratitude to the brilliant professors who so thoughtfully engineered an academic and personal path to a previously underestimated and otherwise unknown potential. Because of them, the French language, for me, was not simply a language of diplomacy, fashion, and sophistication; it was, and is, a language of growth, discipline, and enchanting rebellion. Merci.
Altagrace Gustave, Master of Psychology, FIU 2018
My internship helped me immensely both with my French, professionally, and personally. While my classes helped me with the basics of learning a language, I do not think I really began to learn how to speak “professional” French until my time at the French Consulate. Being immersed in a French environment, learning informal language and slang, and being exposed the different types of French accents as well as the speed at which native speakers speak were all incredibly helpful in gaining a better understanding of the language. They allowed me to come back and excel in my French classes and earned me an Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement in French. Professionally, it was also helpful because even though I am currently not working in a field that uses French, it is something that makes me stand out from others and shows that French is not just a blurb on the skills section of my resume, but I have practical, working knowledge of the language. Personally, the internship was fulfilling because the work I did was important, and I made lifelong memories and friends in fellow interns that I still keep in touch with more than six years later. It also helped me decide to pursue international law as a career, towards which I am currently working.
Ivette Paz, Bachelor Degree in French, 2013