Weeks Leading Up to Departure

In the weeks leading up to the Paris program, I have gotten progressively more excited about going to France! I have never taken an international flight and have never been outside of North America so this program is a great opportunity for me to get out of my comfort zone and be able to experience and appreciate French culture in a deeper and more personal way than ever before. This is a great opportunity for me to use all my skills I have practiced and learned in my French classes that I had taken in high school along with those in college. I am so excited to finally experience for myself the many places in Paris we have learned about through textbook passages and pictures. I am currently preparing for the trip by looking through old French binders and notebooks to prepare myself to be immersed in the francophone world. My Mom was also able to find our family tree during my preparation for France. I always knew my mom’s family was Canadian coming from Nova Scotia. In the piles of papers, we found that on both my great grandmother’s side and great grandfathers side, we have information from 15 generations back. Because of this, I was finally able to find that my family originated from Burgundy, France and Brie, France. Although we are not visiting these cities, this only helped to build my anticipation and excitement.

As I am getting ready to leave the States, I am preparing a gift that reminds me of where I live to bring for my homestay family. With any trip comes a lot of packing. I have been putting together a multitude of outfits that I can bring on my trip but, as you can see in the pictures below I ran into some trouble… As I was getting ready to prepare my suitcase, I found my little brother David hiding inside of it! This will be the first time I will be more than a car drive away from my family, and my brother is not very happy about it. I think he is more mad about the fact that our plane departs on his birthday than me leaving for two weeks. He has told me he wants the Eiffel Tower as a present which lead me to have to explain to my soon to be nine-year-old brother that this is not a Nicholas Cage movie (National Treasure) and it will be nearly impossible for me to steal the Eiffel Tower let alone get it through TSA. Although it will be difficult being away from home for so long in a place I am unfamiliar with, I am still very excited for the opportunity and experiences that await!


Follow this Summer 2018’s Office of Study Abroad & International Experiences Global Correspondent, Brooke Paziale, on her studies in Paris, France!

Brooke is a UMass Lowell World Languages and Psychology double major studying this summer on a UMass Lowell faculty-led study abroad program, Modernism in France & French Cinema & Society with Professors Carole Salmon & Jennifer Cadero-Gillette.

Read Blogs from previous and current Study Abroad trips to Paris:

You can also read another one of our many blogs from locations across the globe!