Blog post and photos provided by Krystal Perkins, Business & Technology ’13
Moving to Paris has been a whirlwind of adventure. Studying abroad at the American University of Paris has engrossed me into a cultural melting pot of students of over 43 countries. I can say hello in 20 languages now!
Previous to arriving in Paris, I wanted to take advantage of my European excursion so I decided to plan a 6 week backpacking trip around Turkey, Greece, Germany, Slovenia, and Croatia. Last year I backpacked around eight countries of Europe in 2 months so I was ready to rough it. The way I travel is the cheapest way possible for the max amount of fun. So in this case our accommodations consisted of Greek grandmother’s homes, beaches, tents, caves, hostels, hotels, and couch surfing.
Couch surfing is an online community of world travelers that provide accommodations in ones homes to other world travelers that want to engage in the local culture. Not only do you get to leave the country a touristic experience but also with an international friend. I have met the most amazing people this way from scientists to engineers, and musicians.
Paris has been a charm. I lucked out with housing and get to wake up to a small view of the tip of the Eiffel Tower. Living the Parisian life and enthralling myself into the culture of cuisine, nightlife, and fashion has been such a wonderful experience. I love seeing the stereotypical Parisian hold a baguette in one hand and a newspaper in the other. People here are so friendly and the way of life is exceptionally different from America’s back home.
I find the different teaching styles the most intriguing. Right now I am taking International Business, International Business Law, Entrepreneurship and Intensive Beginners French. All of my professors are of European decent and I can see their cultural background expressed through how they teach to the class. For example in my international business class, the professor teaches more of the philosophy of culture and how this philosophy interacts with business transactions and globalization.
As for my other classes we compare the general view of American individualism versus socialistic views and how other countries in the European Union work with each other. I personally relate to these classes more because we study different efficient processes and ways of thinking. My learning experiences as well as my social interactions in the classroom have been a rewarding experience.
So basically, I love Paris.