Orientation, Advising and Support

“Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and speak in French since day 1… With Sweet Briar in Paris you have the best support system of great administrators and professors that will help you transition to what I will remember as one of the best decisions of my life.” — Marta Martínez Fernández, Connecticut College


The JYF in Paris program gives students the tools for a deeper understanding of French culture and education system through our intensive orientation and ongoing support to ensure students’ academic success.

Orientation Course

The semester begins in Paris with an in-depth orientation to the city and the French university system. The two-week fall orientation includes intensive and practical training in French composition, grammar, translation and conversation as well as cultural activities and excursions to visit museums and historical landmarks in Paris and the Loire valley. A recommendation of one unit of credit is made (equivalent to 3 semester credits) for those who successfully complete the intensive orientation session in the fall. (Students are responsible for verifying their home school’s policy on credit for the orientation.) Spring semester orientation is one week, due to the earlier start of the university of Paris, and no credit is offered for this orientation session.

Training in French methodology is a very important part of JYF’s orientation. Students are taught to understand the structure, lexicon, rules and expectations of the French university system and learn how to navigate it.

Orientation is also a time for the JYF group of students to get to know each other as well as to discuss safety issues, take care of administrative requirements and adjust to their “new home.”

Individualized Advising

From the application process through the end of the semester/year in Paris, students receive individual advising from the JYF in Paris staff on academics, housing, extracurricular activities and other needs. During orientation, the Program Director works closely with each student on course selections, enrollment and other academic matters.

Academic Tutorials

Academic support is provided by tutorats led by specialists in their field for designated courses in literature, art history, history, political science, international relations and economics. For other subjects, JYF will, in most cases, provide a tutor as needed. These tutorials provide students with an opportunity to discuss course-related questions, clarify assignments, get feedback on their work and address problems they may be encountering in their classes.

Ongoing Student Support

Starting during the application process, JYF staff are available to support students as needed with academic, health, or personal matters throughout their time in Paris and after their return home.