IES Abroad Paris - Business & International Affairs

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About

Paris is also known as the fashion capital of the world, hosting designers such as Chanel, Christian Dior, Yves Saint-Laurent, and many more. Enjoy all that Paris has to offer while studying Business and International Affairs in the City of Light.

The Business & International Affairs Program offers IES Abroad courses taught by faculty from diverse backgrounds and disciplines. The program also offers students the option to take English-taught courses with French and international students at Novancia, the premier business school founded by the Paris Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Enjoy field study trips within Paris, and excursions to important cities such as Geneva and Brussels. Or, gain valuable experience through a business-focused internship. With course offerings in English and French, and French language study, the IES Abroad Business & International Affairs Program is a unique experience for study abroad in Paris.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

94%
based on 38 reviews
  • Academics 7.9
  • Support 9.4
  • Fun 9
  • Housing 9.1
  • Safety 9.2
Showing 16 - 30 of 38
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Paulina
10/10

Study Abroad - Paris BIA

I spent my last semester studying abroad in Paris. I had an amazing time and so I'm extremely grateful with the IES Paris BIA program coordinators and staff for making this such an unforgettable experience! From day 1 of orientation to the last day of classes, the IES Paris BIA staff was always very friendly and welcoming, they would always go out of their way to make sure were happy and never passed an opportunity to share with us special events occurring around the city so that we could go and explore them.

To that point, the IES Paris program had a variety of different field trips within the city, but also to other regions in France. These were one of my favorite things about the program as they allowed us to get to know our peers, but also to get immersed in our host country's culture.

The classes were also an opportunity for us to learn more about France as they were all tailored to provide us with unique insights about the Parisian lifestyle. I was a little worried about the course credits not transferring properly, but the IES staff was very helpful in explaining how this worked in order to avoid such issues.

As for my housing situation, I can only speak for staying with a homestay as that was the option I went for. I had a wonderful experience, and truly recommend doing this when studying abroad. IES did such a great job matching students to host families that everyone felt very comfortable with their living situation.

Overall a very well organized program, offering a unique way of experiencing Paris, and something I will never forget!

How can this program be improved?
The program only recruited students from American universities and so there seemed to be a lack of diversity in the students that participated the program.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Elizabeth
10/10

Paris Calls

What I loved most about going abroad was the independence. I had the opportunity to explore a new city entirely on my own. Well, not entirely on my own because I made a lot of friends along the way. I learned the language, ate the food, and soaked up the culture.
One of my favorite things about this program was the academics. I took classes that I never would have taken at my home school. All of my professors were engaging and clearly experts on their topics. Many of my professors took our classes outside the classroom so that we could learn about our topic first hand. My art history class, for example, took place in a variety of museums so that we were looking at the real art as we learned about it.
I also loved that the program offered a lot of field trips. I went to Normandy and Champagne with IES which are two places I certainly would not have gone to on my own. In Champagne we learned how the champagne is made and the way in which it is marketed to consumers. (The Champagne trip was for my Intro to Marketing Class). The program also had events on weekends where a faculty member would take students to different neighborhoods in Paris.
I recommend studying abroad in Paris even if you don’t speak French that well. I was very nervous my first few days in the city because my French is very poor, but I found that I had no problem at all! Living in Paris allowed me to practice my French. I found people to still be very nice to me even if I didn’t understand what they were saying or messed up my French. Don’t believe in the stereotypes!! The French are very nice!
I loved studying abroad in Paris and truly believe that I am a better person for having done it. The friendly faculty of IES were always there for me when I had questions or needed any assistance. I highly recommend going to Paris and having an experience like no other.

How can this program be improved?
I would have liked a bit more time to travel to other countries. We got three day weekends and a week off to travel.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Nick
10/10

IES BIA Fall 2015

IES Abroad Fall 2015 was the best semester of my life. I highly recommend that everyone go abroad for a semester at some point during their time at college. I was lucky enough to spend a semester abroad in Paris through IES and it is a program that I would highly recommend to other students. I would recommend it for so many reasons but the top three would be their academics, trips and housing.

IES BIA offers many very interesting coursing ranging from Economics, to Art History, to Green Growth. I was unfortunate in that I would not receive credit for any business classes I took while abroad. I therefore took many liberal arts classes such as Art History, Society Today, French History, Green Growth and French. Everyone in the program is required to take a French class in order to improve your skills but there are many levels to these classes and everyone will get placed in a class that suits their French speaking skills and needs. I was a mediocre French speaker going in and got placed in the 301 level class. I had an amazing teacher and had so much fun while also learning a lot of French. The IES classes are not difficult which is nice because I know a lot of people are planning on traveling and do not want to be bogged down by schoolwork. I can say that I never really did any homework and was still very successful in school. However, even though the out of classroom work is not terribly difficult or cumbersome the learning is still present. Many of my classes we would take field trips throughout the city and were able to see the art or culture that we were learning about. I had about 3 or 4 trips to the Louvre for my art history class. I also was able to go and make my own crepes for my French class when we were learning about ingredients and cooking. These kind of experiences will stay with me and I can honestly say that I will remember a lot of what I learned because when you can see or touch the learning it comes to life.

IES runs a couple of school trips which are all well organized and educational. I participated in the trips to Normandy, Vaux le Vicomte and Fontainebleau, and Versailles. These trips are great opportunities to see your fellow classmates as well as teachers in a non-classroom setting while also experiencing French culture. During the trips you also get to eat traditional French meals provided by the program. These were some of the best meals that I ate while abroad and are way better than they sound. IES does a great job organizing these trips so that you have plenty of time to see the history or culture as a group but then you are also given time to explore on your own or with other students. These trips are not mandatory but something that I would highly suggest that every student try to participate in.

The final part of my trip that I would like to share is my homestay. I was incredibly lucky with my host family and my homestay living situation. I feel that I had the best situation imaginable but every student that decided to do a homestay was incredibly pleased with their situation and would argue that theirs was better. My family would allow me to eat dinner with them any night I was home and wanted to eat. I was also able to talk to them and ask them questions about any part of their culture that interested me. As I mentioned before my speaking skills weren't superb but they never made fun of me or laughed and I can say that by the end I could easily communicate in French. My homestay really improved my experience in Paris and is a large part of the reason that I want to go back. I highly recommend a homestay to everyone studying abroad with IES and encourage anyone worried about language barrier or cultural conflicts to give it a try because IES is very accommodating. For those who believe that apartments better suit their needs the apartments provided by IES are also great but their occupants just miss out on the cultural experience.

Overall IES BIA is an amazing program and I hope that many people chose it and have an amazing experience similar to the one I had.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Monica
10/10

One of the best experiences I've had

I went abroad to Paris with IES Abroad and really enjoyed my experience. The program provided a lot of opportunities to learn about France through fieldtrips, the classes and the option to live with a host family. I was very happy with my family placement and the program constantly checked into make sure everything was smooth. The staff and the professors were friendly and truly interested in the students which, I think, improved my experience significantly. I was there for the attacks of November 2015 and everyone’s response and support was beyond what I was expecting.

How can this program be improved?
The one limitation I think the program has is that, since it is only American students, you have to make an effort to immerse yourself in the language and culture. I became pretty fluent (I spoke some French before) through practicing with my family and asking the staff to speak only French to me, but it really is a matter of how much you want to learn.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Vanessa
10/10

A great program

It is unbelievable how quickly I fell in love with the city, the culture and the overall atmosphere. Paris is a unique, beautiful city that I encourage all to experience with an open mind. The program enhanced my experience immensely. Whether it was the generous, loving staff or the intelligent and personable professors, I always felt safe and at home. I lived in an apartment and I will be honest, it was not the nicest, but if you need the privacy and independence that I personally needed, then it is the way to go. It is "far" from the center of Paris, but "far" only means a metro ride away. The metro, their public rail system, is easy to figure out. Overall, I would definitely recommend this program.

How can this program be improved?
I would change the apartment housing to nicer apartments, but I understand the price of living in a major city, especially Paris!
Yes, I recommend this program
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Tara
9/10

Slowly then all at once

Paris has always been my dream destination. When I arrived in the City of Love my expectations and reality were not quite on the same level. But within a month I quickly adapted and fell in love with the beautiful city! It was interacting with the local people, eating the food, going out to the bars with new friends, walking around by myself and experiencing the city that made my expectations reality. Even more the IES Staff were super helpful and caring during the time of adaptation. Paris lives up to her hype.

How can this program be improved?
The courses are difficult. The french teachers tend to lecture rather than actually teach. Frankly, I would have rather been out exploring the city than stuck in the classroom for hours every day.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Spencer
9/10

A Fantastic French Experience

I was incredibly nervous to go abroad. Although I had taken French for five and a half years, I was still worried about the immediate immersion into the culture, especially since I was assigned to a host family even though I applied for apartment housing. Let me say this: IES putting me in a home stay instead of the apartments is a decision I will be eternally grateful for. My family was kind, welcoming, and my French improved more than I ever thought it would.

As for the rest of the program, the staff is one of the nicest, most accommodating, and fun groups of people I have come into contact with in the academic world. They are willing to help with whatever you need, no matter how small the task; be it knowing how to set up your cell phone to helping you book tickets for a weekend vacation, they are able and willing to help as much as they can.

I highly suggest this program to anyone interested in France and French culture. Even if you don't speak a lick of the language, this is a great option. You will learn a great deal about yourself and your abilities during a semester like this.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Megan
9/10

A Semester in Paris

I would highly recommend IES Abroad's Paris Business and International Affairs program to all students looking to study abroad! The staff was friendly, helpful, and very knowledgeable about the city and culture. I was able to take classes that fit in very well with my finance major and French minor (three taught in English and three in French). I also had the amazing opportunity to take an international finance class taught by a French economist at Novancia Business School. This gave me the chance to meet and learn from native French students as well as other international students. My professors, especially my French language one, were great. Even though the academics may not have been as challenging as my home university, I learned so much about French language and culture throughout all of my classes. Not to mention my amazing host parents who taught me so much as well! This IES program is for anyone of any major seeking an unforgettable study abroad experience.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Ryan
9/10

An Excellent Semester Abroad

I had an amazing time with the IES BIA Paris program. All the staff were welcoming and friendly, the classes were fantastic, and the housing was safe. I would recommend this program to other students

No, I don't recommend this program
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Amanda
9/10

Nothing but love for the City of Love

Studying abroad was one of the best experiences of my college career this far. I found Paris to be a wonderful city full of art, history, and of course good food! In terms of transportation around the city, you need nothing more than a monthly transportation pass, good for the metro and buses. My classes were challenging but manageable and I loved the staff onsite. I met so many wonderful people and loved exploring the city with friends. Paris is a rather pricey city, so budgeting was a must. Otherwise, it's a city full of opportunity for exploration! I would recommend making a list of things you want to do before going so that you can see everything. I had a mad scramble at the end trying to fit everything in before leaving.

How can this program be improved?
I would love to have more access to the center. It's open 9-6 but having it open later would allow for groups to meet more easily or for studying after class
Yes, I recommend this program
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Darrian
10/10

An Absolutely Must!

I studied abroad with IES-Paris BIA in the fall of 2014 and it was the best experience of my life! I became more culturally diverse and learned the language even though I was only in the amazing city of Paris for 4 months. The program was great and it involved doing things you wouldn't normally do with your home university like going champagne tasting for a course. Everyone normally says that became a changed person after studying abroad and I didn't think that I would be that person but I did change for the better and glad that I did. I hope one day to return to Paris whether it be for vacation or to work so that I can relive that one semester I studied abroad there.

How can this program be improved?
A wider variety of classes might make the program better.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Jaime
10/10

Best decision I ever made

I studied abroad in Paris at the IES Business and International Affairs Center in the fall of 2014. The teachers and staff at the center were so knowledgable, personable, and helpful that they made me want to visit the center even if I didn't have class. In addition, Paris as a city was absolutely incredible. The city gives you so many opportunities to explore French culture, food, history, architecture, art, and nightlife. The program also gave us the opportunity to explore other cities outside of Paris which was amazing. This was by far the best decision I have ever made, and if I was to do it again, I would go back to the same place and people in a heartbeat.

How can this program be improved?
I wish we would've started earlier so I would have had more time in Paris!
Yes, I recommend this program
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Meghan
9/10

Rich Learning Experiences Outside the Classroom

Paris BIA was the perfect balance of everything I was looking for in a study abroad program because it allowed me to take classes relevant to my major while simultaneously being immersed in French culture. As an accounting student, I enjoyed the diverse offering of businesses classes, such as Intercultural Management, International Political Economy, Business French, Luxury Brand Management, and Global Marketing. The courses I took allowed me to increase my understanding of business in a global context in a way that I would not have been able to if I had stayed at my home university. At the same time, however, I was able to take classes in Parisian art and architecture and France's history with the Middle East and Islam.

One of my favorite aspects of this program was that my professors and program directors made a conscious effort to get students outside of the classroom. My art history class met once a week for three hours, and we seemed to spend nearly three fourths of our class periods on field trips. We saw everything from Pont Neuf, Paris' oldest bridge, to the Louvre, the Musee D'Orsay, Haussmann's boulevards, and the new library, the Bibliotheque Nationale de France. In other classes, I visited the Paris Mosque and took a day trip to Geneva to see the World Trade Organization and the International Red Cross.

Outside of class, the program directors did an excellent job of introducing us to several aspects of French culture. I had the opportunity to watch France play the Netherlands in soccer, bake cakes in a French bakers, spend a weekend in Normandy, and see Versailles and several other palaces. In addition, the day to day interactions I had with my host family enriched my study abroad experience. Through family dinners, trips to the movie theater, afternoons spent baking with my host sisters, and countless other daily activities, I developed a deeper understanding and appreciation of France's unique culture.

How can this program be improved?
The IES BIA center was a little small for the size of the program, and it lacked a sufficient student lounge area. However, the directors mentioned that this is something they are hoping to improve in the future, and it certainly did not put a damper on my overall experience.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Jessica
9/10

Fall in Love with Paris!

There was not a single component of IES's structure that I disliked or with which I found fault. This program has everything that a student could ask for: the staff is incredible, the courses are so interesting and topical, and there are tons of ways that the program can help you get to know your country of choice even more!

How can this program be improved?
I would not change a single thing. Truly, IES's Paris BIA program is phenomenal in every way.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Shazreh
9/10

I want to go back!

Although I was always interested in the concept of studying abroad during college, I was on the fence about spending four months in a country where I knew no one. However, I am so glad that I took the chance to go abroad with the Paris Business and International Affairs program of IES Abroad.
First off, the program has great classes for Business and IR students. I am an International Affairs major so the program's offering of History, Security Studies, and Political Science classes perfectly complemented my major. The program also has a language requirement, which is quite useful in not only being able to communicate in the local language, but also to navigate certain cultural differences. We also had excursion trips to Versailles, Normandy, Brussels, and Geneva that were either offered to everyone in the program or were course-specific. These visits supplemented my understanding of French and European history, politics, and culture.
The program's study center is located within Paris, but many of the people in the program, including myself, lived on the outskirts of Paris. However, thanks to the efficiency of the Paris metro system, commuting was hardly an issue. I actually liked living with a host family right outside of Paris because the I area I lived in, Issy-les-Moulineaux, was les touristy and I had the opportunity to practice my French more and be a part of everyday French life. If I wanted to go into Paris, it was on average a 20 minute metro ride. My host family was a retired couple who I had dinner with three times a week. They often would give me advice on which museums to visit and had a huge knowledge of French culture, especially art. It was always interesting comparing American and French customs with them.
My first friend in the program was a girl who lived in the same building as me and we occasionally has dinner at each other's places if one of our families was out of town. She became my morning metro buddy to our class and I still keep in touch with her. The Paris program was made up of around 60 people, so naturally we all became close and bonded over being in a foreign city and seeing each other on a regular basis in class and usually spent time outside of class as well. I made many close friends in my program and they made my experience in Paris even better. It felt surreal picknicking with them in front of the Eiffel tower after class on Thursday or having fresh crepes right before trekking up the winding steps to the top of the Notre Dame, which was worth it when you were able to see the spectacular view of the city.
The staff of the program were such a strong support system. It was typical to have one of them greet you as you headed to class since the program consists of two building located close to the metro station Denfert Rouchereau. The staff led tours within Paris and excursions outside of the city as well. It was the norm to hang out in their office and talk to them about everything ranging from how you were coping with Paris to what American TV shows the French liked. I really felt that the staff and students became my family away from home. There was always something to do offered by the program such as having a lottery to win tickets for different events such as concerts, soccer games, and culinary classes.
My study abroad experience with the Paris BIA of the IES Abroad program was amazing and I highly recommend the program if you are looking to be part of a close-knit community in a big city. The program provided me with life-long memories.

How can this program be improved?
Although certain business courses were offered at a local university, I wish they had more International Relations courses offered at local universities as well.
Yes, I recommend this program

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