My Experience Of Studying In France

Darya Serzhantova will share how she studied in France.

My Experience Of Studying In France

I first thought about mobility at the beginning of my first year, when I learned about its existence, but decided try during my second year of study, after one student form my group told me that she had returned from a mobility trip to Norway, and these were her stories that inspired me to try.

I guess it should be fun to try.

The package of documents is quite common: curriculum, application for the competition, motivation and recommendation letters, confirmation of language proficiency (this can be an official diploma, such as IELTS, or just a note from an English teacher), and of course financial statement. In my opinion to find necessary courses is the most difficult part, since it is necessary to study the program of the new University in detail and correctly compare it with the HSE schedule. For example, I had to redo it 6 times.

A separate aspect is the GPA, because this indicator is one of the key factors in the selection of students. For me, it was relatively small -7.44. Usually, international mobility is accepted starting from 8.

However, I had two international diplomas, IELTS 7.5 and DELF B2 (in French), which were able to overcome the lack of an average score.

The most pleasant moment is the choice of country and the University. HSE does have a wide range of partners, including some of the most prestigious Universities in the world.

My priority was France, because, first of all, I have studied French for a long time, and, secondly, this is the country that is famous for its quality of higher education. After reviewing the possible universities, I decided on ESSEC Business School – the best business school in France and Europe. A month later, I received an invitation to the program, and I began actively preparing for my departure.

During my mobility, I lived in a hostel near the University, which was located in the suburbs. I cannot say that this was the best town in France, but it was about 40 minutes from the center of Paris.

I often went for a walk in the most romantic city in Europe after the end of my classes.

If we talk about finances, we must admit that France is an expensive country. I spent about 1,315 euros a month: 490 - for a hostel (and this was the cheapest option), 650 - for food, 75 - for transport, 100 - additional expenses.

However, there are scholarships that cover part of the costs - 50,000 rubles per month from HSE and housing expenses were paid by the French state CAF. I did not receive HSE scholarship, but I got CAF - 250 euros to cover housing expenses.

I liked studying at business school.

Firstly, the quality of training is excellent: you will be taught by professionals, who are primarily successful in their careers. In ESSEC, you will get only practical skills: forget about unnecessary theory, learn to better solve cases and apply your knowledge in practice.

Secondly, you decide what to study and how much: the University does not have an exact list of courses; you have a complete freedom of choice. If you want to boost your marketing, take “Luxury Marketing” and visit the best boutiques in Paris (Cartier, Chanel, Hermes). Or maybe you have long been interested in Finance? Then feel free to take “Financial accounting” and solve practical cases about Bavaria beer and Nutella chocolate. A pleasant addition will be excellent equipment of the University, huge classrooms, as well as many laboratories and meeting rooms for group work.

By the way, about group work – they will always be on every subject. Such a skill as teamwork is highly valued in Europe and business schools. Therefore, it is necessary to be ready to have

hours of project discussions.

However, do not worry, because you will quickly aquire a really useful soft skill, which is important in any sphere.

In addition to studying, the University offers many opportunities for extracurricular activities: various sports or entertainment clubs, as well as student parties. You will not get bored here. During my studies, I met a lot of people from all over the world, with whom I continue to communicate to this day. And this is probably one of the most valuable acquisitions that international mobility can bring.

What do I want to advise others? Do not be afraid to try, even if you have a lower GPA, anything is possible. Be open to everything new, try to be more tolerant of other cultures and choose the country of snails and croissants. Vive la France!

Story by
Darya Serzhantova