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Our French Correspondent

Nov 07 2006 08:35
Oliver Broadbent
This is the second of in my series of articles intended to persuade civil engineers that taking an Erasmus placement abroad is a good idea.

In this issue I am going to be looking at holidays, and more precisely just how much we seem to be getting here in Paris. I should say from the outset that our term finishes later than at Imperial: 30th June is when the year ends so it all comes out in the wash. However, I find that summers are long enough as they are and I am happy to sacrifice a couple of weeks then to break up the rest of the year.

So how does it all pan out? For starters, after the three week introductory course taken by all foreign students there is a five day long weekend. A group of Erasmus students took this is an opportunity to hire a car and tour around Brittany. Then two weeks into term proper there is a week's holiday to coincide with the All Saints Day which is a public holiday in France. The student society at the École des Ponts organised a trip to Prague costing next to peanuts for those who were lucky enough to get a place.

At the end of November we have "European Week" which as an opportunity to go and study a subject for a long list of possibilities at one of twenty partner institutions across Europe. The week is subsidised but as money is limited the French get priority over the Erasmus students because the latter are already abroad. Unsuccessful in my application to go to Milan to learn how to build sustainable housing, I am staying in Paris to take a course on International Relations. On the other hand, others have taken it as an opportunity to go on another week-long holiday.

We are given two weeks for Christmas but because here it is a semester system, the first semester continues until February, after which there is another week's holiday to help you relax before the second semester. This week in February is the perfect opportunity to get down to the Alps and get some skiing in. Again the student society organises an ultra cheap trip that is very popular in the department. And as though that were not enough, to break up the six weeks between these two winter holidays there is a long weekend written into the timetable in mid-January with the express purpose of giving people another chance to go skiing.

As for holidays in the second semester, it really rather depends on where we do our final placement, which is the equivalent of the fourth year project at Imperial. The project is either completed in the department or in a company. Given the precedent set by the first semester, I don't expect to be disappointed.

So where did I spend the All Saints Holiday. Well, I am on a whistle-stop tour of the Balkans taking in Sofia, Bucharest, Belgrade and Budapest, from where I am sending this article. If you want to read about what I found there or any more about the life and times of an Erasmus student in Paris, then check out my blog: Right, I?ve got a train to catch...

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Discussion about “Our French Correspondent”

The comments below are unmoderated submissions by Live! readers. The Editor accepts no liability for their content, nor for any offence caused by them. Any complaints should be directed to the Editor.
Dec 09 2006 19:31

Cher Oliver Broadbent

Au moment ou vous lirez ce mail..

j'aurai peut-être trouvé un correspondant...

Ma préocupation pour le moment est de trouver quelqun avec qui je puisse correspondre en Anglais ou en français.

Hello, my name is Clement, I 'm french. I

I?m looking for a person ( boy or girl ),fluent in English to correct me in english and with who I can Help in french - using a web-cam or with mails.

My only wish is to progress in English, also in writing in English.

I am 46, married, I used to play rugby, I speak fluent spanish ( and fench of course ); I visited England and all the south of the USA ( including New York and California ).

I believe in God and that does'nt make me believe that I'am better than the others; I would rather be tolerant after 15 years I've lived out of France.

You : ( my future correspondant ), you can help me in achieving realistic objectives that I choose; and the knoledge you have ( because you read and write a good english, you can be a teacher with a "universitary" level or a student ( more than 18 years old), or a mother at home and you want to do something for the others...

Or just someone who has an e-mail box ( verry easy), and who is fluent in english, able to write good english.

My respect for the ones that are able to share something they have..

I write spanish and french and I use my free time to help people whose aim is a little wider than themselves..

A Bientôt peut-être pour échanger quelques mails.


Dec 09 2006 19:34

mail adress :

[email protected]

3. Pan   
Dec 11 2006 08:21


Mar 14 2008 09:56

je cherche coresspondant pourkee imed je nepa les moingnee je sur un jene je sur povre

Apr 30 2008 16:38

Pour qu'il t'aide a quoi?

6. eric   
Jun 27 2010 17:13

je veut te corespondre

Jun 27 2010 20:22

Je suis Spartacus.

May 22 2011 16:05

je veut corespondent francais de 20ans qui peut m aidee.

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