Students interested in speaking with former students of IFE’s programs should contact IFE, indicating their desire to be put in touch with students in a certain field, or students from a particular university, or any other wishes.
What students have to say about their experience in an IFE Field Study and Internship program
(These comments are drawn from anonymous student evaluations)
The preparatory session
“Over all I found IFE to be a unique, well-organized and exceptional program. I’m happy that I chose it and I know that my level of French is already much better because of the classes and the homework.”
“I like the fact that we take courses in many different subjects—it’s a way for everyone to be the ’specialist’”
“The courses were much more work than I expected, but I learned a lot more than I expected.”
“A great way to learn about French history from a French perspective”
“Mr. Cauchy is an incredible professor! I found his classes interesting, well-organized, and at times amusing too.”
“A lot of information in a small amount of time; All of the republics to learn about!”
“It was interesting to see the effects of the past on the present. The professor was very good at explaining the French perspective on international relations.”
“The visits to the museum of immigration and the Belleville neighborhood were interesting.”
“These first five weeks at IFE have really prepared me to immerse myself in French society. My French language comprehension has greatly improved.”
“The course was very useful for familiarizing myself with the French press and current events in France. And the discussions and presentations were useful for practicing my French.”
“Dutch is a lot easier to learn than I thought, and in Brussels its very useful to know a “beetje” of dutch.”
Internship and research
"I hope that the energy cost calculator I created helps the ministry achieve its goals."
"I was able to create partnerships with cultural organizations in Paris that have been useful to my host organization (theater)."
"My paper will be useful to my host organization."
""I have a better understanding of what life as a researcher in a lab is like. I had a chance to see the challenges and rewards of a career in science."
"I spoke a lot of French at lunch."
"I was pushed out of my comfort zone by working in a part of Paris unlike anything I’ve ever experienced."
"I have learned about the major differences between the American and French education systems."
"I helped my department make multiple sales. My internship in an international multi-lingual workplace was exactly what I was looking for."
"My internship studying French food markets was definitely a unique experience and I am very happy with how it turned out in the end."
"Did I meet my goals?"
"Completely! I’ve gained work experience I have already put to use on my grad school application, and I’ve improved my French."
"My French as improved drastically and I’m very comfortable in a French working setting in terms of culture and language. I’ve also learned a great deal about the French government and economics research."
"I’ve met the objectives of exploring a different echelon of environmental work, improved my economic analysis skills, and learned to approach environmental issues from another perspective."
"My main goal of integrating myself into the theater and being capable of communicating has been met."
"I feel great about the risks I took reaching out to all sorts of people."
"I have done everything I hoped to do and more."
"I have learned alot and am more fluent in French as a result of working at ... "[public health organization for young people].
"One of my biggest objectives was to practice my speaking skills, which I most certainly fulfilled during this internship whether it was with the teachers in the teachers lounge or with students in the classroom."
"I hoped to gain insight into the world of European soccer and to improve my French comprehension and speaking. Through this internship I have achieved both of these goals."
"My French has improved, I became a part of my team at work and I learned to do new things."
"I have a much clearer understanding of French environmental law and the legislative process in general."
"To a large extent I have met my objectives which were to gain fluency in French and to soak up the French lifestyle in order to better understand it."
"What did I learn about myself"
"I’ve learned that voicing your opinion, even if you’re the outsider, is extremely important and can bring a lot to the conversation/situation.
"That I shouldn’t be afraid of making mistakes."
"I learned that I have many irrational fears and that I am capable of overcoming them."
"I’ve grown up a bit and I think it will be hard to go back to living on a college campus."
"I’ve learned that I really need structure (whether self-imposed, or given) to thrive in a work setting."
"I’ve learned that I could be good enough to work in two of the most important museums in Paris."
"If I work up the courage to say something more often I might just make a difference!"
"That I enjoy working at a think tank and with people who share my passion for learning and discussion."
"That it’s completely acceptable to be very assertive in the workplace. This was something I really had to work on but I know that I have gained crucial skills."
"That I can improve my French with constant practice once I get over my fear of making mistakes."
"I can’t wait to be a teacher!"
"I realized that no one can help you unless you ask for help."
"I learned a lot about my ability to work independently."
"I have learned how to accept constructive criticism."
The program overall
"Thank you for this wonderful opportunity! I learned so much and this has influenced my decisions about the future because now I would like to come back to Paris for a Master’s degree."
"Attitude is everything, and any success is a success!"
"Thank you for all you do!"
"I can’t possibly fit into these five lines how much I’ve learned this semester!"