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Summer abroad

Ever since I can remember, I relished the idea of traveling the world. With the paradise I call home, I find myself very fortunate to live on Oahu, an island where most people eagerly include on their bucket list. However, I didn’t always live in Hawai’i. I was born in Pohnpei, Micronesia, and during my eight years there, I only saw the world through a TV screen. When I moved to Oahu, it was a culture shock. From seeing the changing colors on street lights for the first time to discovering the existence of movie theatres, I was mesmerized. That was the start of my desire and curiosity to view what lied beyond the ocean blue horizon of the Pacific Ocean. Studying at the Institut Francais des Alpes will be a continuation of achieving the desire while realizing my personal, academic, and professional goals to my highest potential.

I’ve been fortunate to have numerous opportunities to travel internationally. Every location I visit brought back the feeling of eight-year-old me sticking my head out the car window driving through the street lights of Downtown Honolulu. From seeing a donkey for the first time in Benalmadena, Spain to having my first taste of Guinness in Dublin, Ireland all the way to strolling the Walls of Dubrovnik in Dubrovnik, Croatia, I always aimed to immerse myself in the countries’ rich culture. However, I was always missing one essential element — the understanding of the locals through their native tongue. What started out as registering for FR 101 to fulfill a language requirement developed into a deeper desire to understand and value the French customs and cultural practices. By the end of my study abroad program, I am certain I will accomplish these goals, and I plan on continuing my knowledge of the language by completing a Certificate in French.

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Throughout my time studying at the Institut Francais des Alpes taking FR 258-259 and living with a French family, I will gain an in-depth understanding of contemporary French society. This will be beneficial as a communication major along with obtaining my French certificate. Engaging in the intercultural and international communication of France will allow me to utilize the experience by applying it to the Communication BA Tracks: Communications in Communities. I will be inspired to find a specific project area needed for my major requirement.

As a communication major and an avid traveler, I hope to one day have a career as a Public Relations Specialist in Europe. Conversing in a language spoken globally, such as French, can be beneficial for exchanging, sharing, and understanding ideas and promote innovation and creativity in a PR Agency. Strong relationships between an agency and its clients are vital, requiring trust between the two. Expressing knowledge about the customs, the cultural practices, and understanding of the country builds that strong relationship needed.

After thorough research, I am certain that studying French at the Institut Francais des Alpes is most fitting for me to achieve my personal, academic, and professional goals as specified above.

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