Studying abroad is so much fun! I cannot rave how much I loved studying abroad while I was an undergrad. A little info about the girl behind Girl In Gamba: I studied abroad three times (can you believe it?!?!). So naturally, I thought I would talk about what it was like to study abroad at NYU Paris.
First off, let me just say that Paris was the last destination where I studied abroad. I previously studied in Italy and Spain. So I’m a little bit biased to the first two, but I promise to give you my upmost and honest opinion!
Reasons why I wanted to study abroad at NYU Paris
I actually was an undergrad at NYU, and recently graduated (go me!). If you’ve ever been or even considered attending NYU, then you know how much they push studying abroad. In fact, that was one of the reasons why I applied in the first place. I first visited Paris while I was studying abroad in Italy, and I fell in love. Yes, Paris can be super cliché, and yes I expected to fall in love with a French guy who would’ve offered his baguette, but these things did not happen at all.
I would describe Paris as a French New York. It is very cosmopolitan and busy, but oh my gosh, can I just rave about the subway system?!?! It is so convenient compared to New York City, and I am absolutely in love with European transportation! All of this really appealed to me, but it was really the timing that made the final decision.
At the time, I wanted to take the LSAT in the Summer, and if you’ve ever looked into taking the LSAT, you’d know that it’s only offered about 4 times a year. So, I really wanted a program that would’ve came after the LSAT. Spoiler alert: I didn’t end up taking the LSAT at all. Additionally, I wanted to do a Summer abroad program instead of a semester like I did in Italy because I was going into my senior year, and still had a few classes that weren’t offered off campus. So, as a result I ended up doing the NYU Paris program. Also, who could resist baguettes, cheese galore, crepes, and lovely French pastries!?!?
What I Didn’t Like
I’m starting with this because I think it’s better to hear the cons first. It’s kind of like a meal. Sure, I’d like to have the dessert first, but really it should be last. So we’re saving the best for last!
When I decided to study abroad at NYU Paris, I didn’t go for the food, unfortunately. Yes, I love sweets and drinks and bread and cheese, but I’m also a vegetarian, and the French have a lot of meat related dishes! It was actually really hard to eat real meals, and I found myself gorging on cheese and bread (not that that’s a bad thing).
I know Spanish and Italian pretty well. They’re really similar after all. However, French is a whole new beast! It was so hard for me to learn French before going (I like to learn at least a few handy phrases before I go to any country). French was super hard! But I did pick up a lot more than I thought I would! Honestly, asking for directions and ordering food is the most important, am I right?
What I liked about Paris
There are so many cute cafes! I loved sitting in cafes and drinking cute drinks! You’re also in freaking Paris, where the Eiffel Tower is! Sightseeing is a must, and it is so much fun to see all these monuments that you read in the books. Also, can we just talk about the museums?!?! I was totally not a museum person, but I have been converted! Paris museums are just amazing! You’ve got the Louvre, l’orangerie, the D’Orsay. There are just so many that you need at least a week just to fully grasp it all.
I’m used to the European ways of no ice and no air conditioning, but Paris summers are not bad at all! It was a fairly good temperature, with a few hot days here and there. Compared to Italy, I would say that Paris summers are definitely more bearable.
I know I’ve mentioned the transit system, but really, the Paris subway is almost like a gift from heaven (minus the Châtelet station). With that, the yummy desserts, the sightseeing, I really did enjoy Paris. Also, I can’t forget Shakespeare and Co! The original is located right there in Paris!
So, I really hope this helps you decide if you want to study abroad at NYU Paris. Even though I did it at NYU, I hope this helps you no matter where you are! I love traveling, and I love to talk about my experiences, so please let me know if you have any questions! I love answering questions too!
For more travel posts make sure to check out this link!
P.S. I took the picture that is featured on this article. You must visit Ladurée because the macaroons are exceptional!