What is it really like for students to study abroad on one of our programs? More than 25 faculty and staff from 24 Consortium schools found out this April on our two multi-location Familiarization Trips to Paris and Nantes, and Granada and Rabat.
What are Familiarization Trips?
Familiarization Trips (Fam Trips) are short, educational trips designed to familiarize staff and faculty at Consortium Member and Associate Member schools with our Centers and study abroad programs. Fam Trips touch on key parts of the IES Abroad experience, including IES Abroad facilities, partner universities, housing options, classes at IES Abroad and local partner universities, internship placements, cultural activities, and more.
Paris & Nantes | March 19-25, 2017
Participants on the Paris & Nantes Fam Trip experienced la vie française firsthand! During their trip, they learned what IES Abroad students experience while studying and interning abroad on our programs in Paris (at our two Centers: French Studies and Business & International Affairs) and Nantes.
The trip kicked off in Paris with a walking tour of the historic village of Montmarte. While in France’s capital, participants visited local homestays and student apartments and toured both the Paris Business & International Affairs Center and the Paris French Studies Center. Other activities included opportunities to meet with students, visits to local internship placements, and observation of IES Abroad courses, including France & the European Union and History of Photography.
At the end of their three days in Paris, participants embarked on a train ride to Nantes, where they spent the final four days of the Fam Trip. Notable highlights included joining IES Abroad students on a visit to the local open-air market Marché de Talensac as part of their courses French Language in Context: Independent Abroad and French Language in Context: Emerging Competent Abroad. Participants also enjoyed a wine and cheese pairing while sitting in on the course French Cooking and Gastronomy: Food, Wine and Etiquette. A tour of the Nantes Center, visits to internship sites, meetings with IES Abroad faculty, visits to homestays, a walking tour of Université de Nantes & Audencia Business School, and a ride atop Nantes’ Grand Elephant rounded out the Nantes portion of the trip.
Granada & Rabat | March 19-25, 2017
During the Granada & Rabat Fam Trip, participants learned about the following programs offered:
- Granada - Study in Granada
- Multi-Location - Europe & the Muslim World: Granada & Rabat
- Rabat - Study in Rabat
- Rabat Summer - Francophone Studies & Arabic Language
The trip began in Granada, where participants toured the Albayzin and the Alhambra, visited the University of Granada, and attended a traditional Flamenco show. Other highlights from their time in Granada included a tour of the IES Abroad Granada Center, a traditional Spanish meal shared with a local host family, visits to student internship sites, and observing IES Abroad classes, such as The Digital Transformation of Society and Organizations in the 21st Century and Women in Mediterranean Literature.
After three days in Granada, the group traveled to the bustling city of Rabat, Morocco’s capital. While there, Fam Trip participants learned about IES Abroad Rabat study abroad programs and student services, and attended our Gender and Society in North Africa and Beyond class. Participants also visited student internship sites, received a guided tour of the Medina, and experienced a traditional Moroccan meal with a Rabat host family. The trip attendees also enjoyed a faux Moroccan wedding organized by the IES Abroad Rabat Center. Held each term, this popular event allows students to experience the celebratory customs of a traditional Moroccan wedding.
By the end of these Fam Trips, all participants gained a better understanding of why students choose to study abroad in these cities on IES Abroad programs, and how they can now use their firsthand knowledge to advise students who are interested in studying abroad in Granada, Rabat, Paris, and Nantes.
How would you like to experience an IES Abroad study abroad program just like the students do? Learn more about our Familiarization Trips.