Paris in the Spring

April 11, 2018

 Paris group Louvre

Above, from left, Lindsey Rosa ’21, Theodore Jones ’20, Maggie Dobson ’18, Makayla Keeney ’21 and Meghan DeLuca ’19 in front of the Lourve. Below (top) professors Lisa Donovan and Diane Scott jump for joy at the Place de la Concorde, and (bottom) Keeney and Rosa in front of the Eiffel Tower.

Paris jumpTen students – along with Diane Scott, associate professor of arts management, and Dr. Lisa Donovan, professor of fine and performing arts – experienced Paris in the springtime when they visited landmarks such as the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, Montmatre, and the Catacombes.

The trip, which also included an excursion to Versailles, France, was part of Scott’s travel course, “Paris and Comparative Cultural Policy.” For Makayla Keeney ’21 of Campton, N.H., the opportunity to visit Paris and Versailles was the fulfillment of a longtime dream.

A double major in arts management and fine and performing arts, Keeney said her favorite place was the Eiffel Tower, which had been on her “bucket list” for some time. “Even though it was surrounded by tourists, it was jaw-dropping to be in the presence of such a spectacular structure.”

However, she said another great part of the experience was the opportunity to venture away from popular tourist destinations. Off the beaten path, she enjoyed opportunities to observe the way French people live – and also to experience the local cuisine. “The food in Paris was probably one of my favorite parts of the trip,” she said. “I didn't have a single bad meal while I was there.”

Paris Eiffel“This experience was life-changing for me,” Keeney continued. “I learned so much about the world and myself, which was priceless. It was so important to me to learn about the culture in Paris. The need to open one's mind to other people and their different ways of life is something that cannot be discovered in any other way. Traveling opens up new opportunities and connections, which is amazing.”

The experience satisfied several desires for Lindsey Rosa ’21 of Prospect, Conn. In addition to wanting to travel while in college, the destination was a perfect fit with her two top interests – culture and the arts. The place she most loved was Versailles. “It was so cool to be able to experience a place that I had only seen in history books; a place that is full of not just France’s history, but the world’s,” she explained.  

Also a double major in arts management and fine and performing arts, Rosa had never traveled outside the country. “It was a huge culture shock, but I learned so much about how people from other countries live,” she said. “People in France are not that different from those in America.

“It was interesting to see the children playing in the streets, or the teenagers chatting in the park. It only seemed foreign because they all spoke a different language, yet it was the type of thing we see in this country every day! Paris reminded me of New York and Boston: it had the historical architecture and feel of Boston, with a mix of the contemporary art and fashion of New York.”

Both Keeney and Rosa said an important part of the experience was the opportunity to become better acquainted with the other students in the class, and their professors.

“It’s amazing how fast you connect with people,” Rosa said. “Spending so much time together made it easy to get to know each other. I also was able to get to know my professors on a personal level. We talked for hours about the school, our classes, and our visions for future employment.”