University student life in France is organized by an agency called the CROUS (Centre Regional des Oeuvres Universitaires et Scolaires). Each university has its own chapter that organizes all sorts of extracurricular activities for students. You will have a chance to discuss your plans with our Student Life Coordinator in Paris.
Cours de cuisine
One of our hostesses welcomes groups of students into her home for a modestly priced cooking class. This year, the majority of our juniors gathered to learn how to cook two dishes (appetizer and main dish or main dish and a dessert) per class.
If you want to make an authentic French meal with your friends in the ambiance of a fancy apartment in the 6th, take a cooking class. It's as much as you'd pay in a genuine bistro, but more fun. I think Madame France-Beguin has a good approach to food in general, plus she has good taste in music (which she will play while you eat) and if the weather is nice you can go out on the terrace. Do it.
Through Middlebury, students may enroll in an introductory level wine-tasting class
Students have commented in the past:
The wine tasting classes are a great way to begin learning about what to look for in a wine in a country where you find it everywhere! The classes are a lot of fun, the instructors are funny, knowledgeable, and friendly, and you will learn a lot.
The class about pairing wines with food was informative and delicious! I didn't have much money to be buying my own bottles of extraordinary wine, so I was really happy to get a chance to enjoy some superb ones with friends.
Sports and Fitness
The best place to begin is the SUAPS, the sport department of your university in Paris. You will be able to sign up for virtually any sport you'd like, and this is how you are going to meet French students in France. However, sign up as soon as you arrive as classes fill up very quickly. Please, see our Student Life Coordinator.
In Paris, students will benefit from special rates at a complex that is not simply a place to workout, but that offers much more: aquatic park and pool, fitness, dance and aerobic classes, tennis, squash, badminton and racquetball, and even several restaurants and a cinema. To join, please see our Student Life Coordinator for more information.
Thanks to the Middlebury program I received an exceptional price for an exceptional gym. The modern fitness equipment, cleanliness and expansiveness of the location are a perfect combination for a student looking to stay and shape and relieve stress. In addition to the facilities, it is an ideal way to meet French speakers. They are more than willing to strike up a conversation about sports or politics during the workout!
Membership in a choir
A professor in the summer French School, Bonnie Woolley, directs two choral ensembles in Paris that might be of interest to Middlebury students. La Chorale Allucere is a choir that is open to all, and rehearses in French. You may also sing at the Chorale Universitaire de Paris. Please contact our Student Life Coordinator for details.
Museums at Student Rates
Each year, students (both juniors and graduates) may sign up for the Carte Louvre Jeunes. For under 20 €, students can have a pass valid for the year, which gives them unlimited access to the Musée du Louvre, one of the world's largest and perhaps most renowned art museum. In addition to the Carte Louvre Jeunes, students have the opportunity to sign up for the Musée d'Orsay's Carte Blanche. For a registration fee of 22 €, students have unlimited access to this Parisian museum specializing in Impressionism and high quality temporary exhibits for the entire year.
Job opportunities in Paris with French Families
Over the years, students have worked as tutors, babysitters and English teachers for families in Paris. Families continually contact our Center to find interested students. If you are interested in working with a French family and making a little money on the side, don't hesitate to contact our Student Life Coordinator.
My job was well-paying, flexible, and fun. The three kids are intelligent and willing to improve their English conversation in any way. It gave me the opportunity to appreciate the way a French family functions, and to better understand the relationships between family members. Moreover, the extra 45 € every week helped me enjoy what Paris had to offer.