College Study Abroad, Cannes

Apr 5th, 2006, 10:33 AM
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College Study Abroad, Cannes

I'm hoping someone has experience or information on this. My daughter did not get into the college of her choice but was accepted ther second semester Jan. 2007. She is considering doing a study abroad this Fall, while she is waiting to start college. The company she is thinking of going through is AIFS, American Institute For Foreign Study. The program she would do is in Cannes, France.
Many Universities use this company for ther study abroad programs, locally..BU, BC, URI etc.(I think there are 160 colleges listed).
Has anyone ever used this company? Has anyone ever studied or know someone who has studied at College International de Cannes?
Any info you have is helpful. Thanks!
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Apr 5th, 2006, 11:56 AM
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oops, I meant "there" and "their".
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Apr 5th, 2006, 03:12 PM
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ttt
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Apr 5th, 2006, 04:22 PM
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anyone??
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Apr 5th, 2006, 05:16 PM
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ttt
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Apr 5th, 2006, 05:22 PM
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I'm not familiar with this school. I can tell you that a red flag goes up because of the location. Cannes is a seaside resort, not the kind of place that suggests academic rigor. That alone doesn't mean anything, but it could be a playground for rich kids who want mummy and daddy to think they're actually learning French. Such places do exist.

I'm curious about why a school would make a student wait a semester to be admitted. Are they expecting her to be enrolled somewhere else? I know it's not my business, but I teach high school so I'm curious. I've never heard of this.
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Apr 5th, 2006, 05:41 PM
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I went through AIFS to study abroad in Florence. I know nothing about the Cannes program, but AIFS in Florence was run very well. The staff was easily accessible and set up many activities for us (i.e. cooking classes, trips to other cities). Before we arrived in Florence, there was a 3 week language program in Siena where we were able to get to know the other students and learn basic Italian.

I can't say that the academics were that great, but truthfully, I was not there for the academics, rather to explore Europe, and "learn" in a non-traditional classroom.

I'm sure your daughter knows that most kids who study abroad are in their Junior year of college. I don't think it should effect her decision, just another thing to think about.

All in all, it was the best experience I have ever had. I wouldn't say that AIFS made it that way, but I just felt "home" when I arrived in Europe!
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Apr 5th, 2006, 06:31 PM
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What is she planning on studying in college? Will the credits definitely transfer to her college? Does she speak French or interested in the French culture? Too many kids chose schools overseas without really investigating everything about the school and the transferring or acceptance of courses which can be a real waste of time and money otherwise.There are SO MANY programs that one can explore on the internet to find a "good fit" in terms of interests,location and schooling that I would look into that further.One doesn't always have to use what your school wants you to use overseas but you better make sure that the classes and credits transfer and are approved before signing up. I agree about Cannes not being the atmosphere for a college program-what is the school program known for...ie.anthro,business,art?
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Apr 6th, 2006, 03:32 AM
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Guy...the college she was accepted to in Jan 2007 does not do a wait list. Instead they say they postpone the qualified students. If that makes sense?
In Cannes she would continue to study French (beginner) and French history.
I know there are several other companies that do study abroad. This company looks good and so many colleges use this program (AIFS). I talked to the US school and they are trying to find out if her credits transfer. Honestly, that's not my biggest concern. Her safety is my concern.
On this program her travel is included (4 days Paris, etc).
If anyone is familiar with a similar program, please let me know.
She could work or take courses at our local University (unless she decides to go to one of the schools she was accepted to) during the Fall, but a semester in Europe would be such an oppurtunity.
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Apr 6th, 2006, 04:27 AM
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Hi trish,

I encourage study abroad as long as the credits will transfer.

Have you checked this with her college admissions office?

Hi Guy18
>I'm curious about why a school would make a student wait a semester to be admitted....<

Like an airline, the college wants to fill its seats. They accept a certain number of students knowing that some of them will go elsewhere.

Of the applicants who do show up, some fraction will drop out after the first semester.

So, they accept a certain number for Spring admission hoping that they will not go to another school.


Former minor administrative educational functionary.
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Apr 6th, 2006, 05:57 AM
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collegeconfidential.com is a web site more on target. Do a search or post your question there. How about a program in Quebec?
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Apr 6th, 2006, 06:40 AM
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hellokittie...my daughter LOVES hello kittie! Anyway, Quebec would also be good. The problem is not all study abroad programs accept freshman. They also may require more years of a foreign language. She has 3 years Spanish and 1 year French. She would like to continue with the French.
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Apr 6th, 2006, 06:47 AM
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Also, IRA, yes, I did check with the college adm. office and they are checking. They need to know specifically what courses she is taking first. Which means she has to decide first, whether to do study abroad and where. Second, whether to go to a college she was accepted instead of waiting for 2007(Emerson College in Boston) or take coures here for a semester and then goin 2007. She has about two weeks to decide.
Thanks!
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Apr 6th, 2006, 02:34 PM
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I've gone on an AIFS program to the Sorbonne in Paris, about 15 years ago.

If it runs the same way, AIFS is just a middleman, they don't have any classes nor teach anything. They just handle the paperwork and arrangements for students to get into foreign universities that have some kind of classes for foreigners. It is just a convenience thing as they handle everything and have ties with them. They also usually have some housing set up that they sort of have subleased from the college or have other arrangements.

I wasn't that impressed with their on-site handlers, but they were okay. The classes have nothing to do with them, though, so it depends on the quality of the school you choose through them. Basically, you can usually do this on your own a lot cheaper (which is what I found out when I did it), they just mark up a lot what they actually pay the school for classes and room. However, it is more convenient for them to handle the whole thing and their rates are still usually pretty reasonable.

I think it's a good idea of a way to spend that semester. I don't know about colleges using AIFS, anybody can sign up with them, but maybe they also handle those kind of programs for certain colleges and then they should know more what credits might transfer. I read an article once in the travel section about a woman who did that exact thing for her son, only he went to the London program. It was the same situation -- he had been waitlisted or didn't get in anywhere or something. She said spending that year abroad in that London program was terrific for him in terms of experience and confidence, and meeting many different kinds of people, and he then got into a college for the second year.
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Apr 6th, 2006, 02:47 PM
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Christina..Thank you for your post. It was helpful and very clear. My daughter is also finding these posts helpful. Thanks!
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Apr 6th, 2006, 03:54 PM
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not working
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Apr 7th, 2006, 12:29 PM
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yeah, well, I think the important thing is to pick an AIFS program where you'd be studying something you are interested in. I think the French programs are all French language, although they might have something different at the Cannes school. A lot of the universities they choose are regular universities so it isn't an issue. If there is any doubt on the type of school, you'd have to check in more about that.

Personally, I chose Paris because I wanted to be in Paris and the many opportunities it has for things outside the school. Cannes wouldn't appeal to me as for location, but I assume you know exactly what it is like (rich, film festivals, resort area) and have a reason for choosing it or want a Riviera location.

The school, the College International de Cannes is a perfectly respectable, credentialed school for teaching French to foreigners. It is listed in the official Petit Guide FLE (Assn of schools for teaching French to foreigners) which I think are the best schools for that. It was founded by the French poet, Paul Valery (the university at Montpellier is also named after him). You can read about it in that guide www.fle.fr , although I assume AIFS has some info in their brochure. They have their own website also, which you may have seen
http://www.french-in-cannes.com/

As you can see from their website, you can just enroll on your own. YOu might want to compare the fees and see what you are paying extra for AIFS and decide if it is worth it. I didn't know how to do this kind of thing myself before I did it, and had never traveled to France, so would have been too inexperienced to do it totally on my own, but you and your daughter together ought to be able to handle that, I think, if you have a specific school picked out (and we didn't have the internet when I was doing this in 1988, or email, so it was more difficult).

must know. Maybe they have some great program, I don't know.

The article I read had the son going to Richmond College in London, as I recall, and that wasn't for language studies, obviously.

I don't have any major complaints about AIFS, as I said, they just mark up the school rates for their profit. They had several guys in charge who would handle problems, issues, and then some in the dorms. Some of them were good, and some were slackers, that's all, sort of typical college resident advisor things. They also had some adults on the floor of my dorm who were really noisy and that bothered me -- they were teachers or something who get to go on those trips for free to try to train to be group leaders on one, or something like that. These in-training guides on my dorm floor were worse than any of the participants in terms of noise they created (talking in the hallways real loud late at night, etc), and they didn't do anything useful.

I didn't really need their services that much, though, once you are settled in and just going to classes.
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Apr 7th, 2006, 12:51 PM
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Without a doubt I would encourage your daughter to do some sort of travel semester/ educational trip. Google "gap year" for other great ideas. Going hrough a UK company might also be a great way to meet non Americans.
I spent one semester in the UK and spent far too much of my time with the ohter Americans!!
Also ask AIFS for the names of students similar to your daughter- pre Freshman age vs junior.
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Apr 7th, 2006, 01:26 PM
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Christina...thank you for the links. I was not aware of them (maybe my daughter is). Thank you for the great advice too. What a bind my daughter is in....go to a school she was accepted to but is not first (or even 2nd)choice, go to a college she was admitted to but not until Jan2007 (hence study abroad) or wait and see if she gets into the ones she was waitlisted??? She's going nuts! She won't find out about the waitlisted ones until June or July. So much competition now! She is a great student, great grades and involved in everything! Oh well, got that off my chest!
Thanks again
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Apr 7th, 2006, 01:37 PM
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So do I understand correctly...Emerson is her backup school? She MUST be a very good student then...I know how I tend to think in such situations (not that you asked ), I'd go to the school that wants me NOW, especially if it's a good one like Emerson. Unless of course the others are absolute tops in her field.
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