Orientation and Activities
The program begins during the pre-departure orientation held on the Skidmore College campus during the semester prior to studying abroad. Upon arrival in France, students will begin the semester with a one-week orientation. The orientation begins in Paris. After 3 days in Paris, the group will travel outside of Paris for a 2 night orientation excursion in another part of France. The group will return to Paris at the end of the week, and students will meet their host-families. The orientation programs focus on French language, culture and history through a series of lectures and guided tours. The location of the orientation excursion may change each semester. In past years, the orientation excursion has been to Normandy & Brittany, the Loire Valley, and Fontainebleau.
Excursions & Activities
Regardless of which program in Paris you participate in, the excursions and cultural activities are considered an integral part of the Skidmore program that complements students’ coursework. You can look forward to guided tours of museums and historical landmarks such as Notre Dame, Monmartre, and Versailles, as well as excursions to places of interest outside of Paris such as Normandy, Chartres, Fontainebleau, and the Loire Valley. Excursions and cultural activities may include students from both the programs in Paris.
n the past, the program has visited Brittany and Normandy (a two-day trip including le Mont-Saint-Michel, Bayeux and the Normandy D-Day beaches), the Cathedral and the medieval city of Chartres, the Château of Fontainebleau, the South of France (a three-day trip in Provence including Avignon, Arles, Nîmes, Les Baux, Saint-Rémy, and Glanum), and the Loire Valley Châteaux (a two-day trip including Amboise, Chambord, Chenonceau, Blois, and Beauregard).
To learn more about life on the Skidmore in Paris program, read this student blog: Sophie à Paris
Below are newsletters created by the onsite staff with details and student comments about orientation, program excursions, host families and internships.