Rebecca McIver ’15 (Mableton, Ga.) is spending the semester studying French language and culture in Paris. She wrote the following article about her time abroad.
My spring semester started with a move from one Lafayette to another: from Lafayette College to Résidence Lafayette in Metz, France. As a mechanical engineering and international studies dual degree major, it was not only a requirement, but also a dream to be able to spend a semester in France and use my French language and cultural skills. That dream became a reality when I discovered that Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, Ga., my hometown, had a campus in Lorraine, France.
My language skills have also come in handy in my internship in the higher education and research department of a community-based organization called Metz Metropole. While the first few days on the job were difficult, I was able to learn quickly in order to survive. This internship is not only making a difference in my French, but I am also learning research principles and public policy, while making a number of good connections. After graduation, I hope to work for an international company or organization. Learning to do business in another language and country is an opportunity that will benefit me as I prepare for my career.
Interestingly enough, Metz is also the same town where I came across a statue of the Marquis de Lafayette while shopping one weekend. The French inscription on the bottom of the statute translates to “the first time I heard the name of America I loved it, from that moment I knew she was fighting for her freedom, I burned with the desire to shed my blood for it.”
The circle is complete: A student from Lafayette College travels to France, lives in Résidence Lafayette, and finds a statue of her College’s namesake in her host city! I am honored to be a small part of this legacy at Lafayette College.