In late April, Vanier College said good bye to eleven students in the Marketing, Accounting and Micropublishing and Hypermedia programs who left for France for a spring internship. Some are headed to Paris, and others to Belfort, Troyes, Montbeliard and Vannes.
This six to eleven-week internship is their first. It will allow them to learn and experience new things that will enhance their abilities in business, marketing and events planning. They will be working for international companies such the Novotel hotel chain, General Electric, the Belfort Eurokéennes, one of the most important French music festivals, Bleecker, a Paris real estate company, the CAPEB, a French syndicate, and in the Town Hall of Troyes.
“I don’t know what to expect; it will be a whole new experience”, says Alana Simon, while Leonise Mouawad adds “I know work environments in Canada and France are different. I’m expecting more formality but I’m waiting to see”.
Students chose where to do their internships for different reasons. Tahir Abbas is going to Troyes because it resembles Montreal while Sabina Khan and Seeham Allison chose Belfort because it is close to the German and Swiss borders. Alana and Leonise are headed to Paris to experience the Parisian lifestyle.
This trip to France will provide students with both a rich professional experience as well as a meaningful personal one. Some students will be living on their own for the first time, such as Alana, who is feeling “both nervous and excited” at the prospect. For her part, Moumita Hasina-Khan says, “I think this experience will help me grow as a person and become more independent”.
“We live in a global economy, so providing our students with opportunities to work in a foreign country and to learn new business customs will serve them well in the future. This is our 12th year of the exchange program and so far over 650 students have benefited from the learning opportunities provided by exchanges in France,” concludes George Dracopoulos, the Vanier International Business Exchange Coordinator.