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Community College in France

You will find news about the Community College in France program in this section.

Los Angeles Community Colleges in France 

The initiative Community Colleges abroad in France, launched two years ago as part of the program Transatlantic Mobility and Friendship Initiative, was created principally to increase and diversify student mobility between the United States and France. After two years in its pilot phase (with 20 students participating each year), in 2019 this project is projected to reach 65 students who will travel to France during the summer, settling in four different cites (Paris, Caen, Lyon and Montpellier). The programs will focus on topical themes, including sustainable development, “green” transportation, waste management, industrial challenges, and living in the digital age.

Given the very strong ties between the cities of Paris and Los Angeles (MoU signed in 2016), a specific program was established for the Los Angeles Community Colleges District (LACCD) students, which represents the largest district in the United States for this type of higher educational institution (9 colleges and 250,000 students). A three-party agreement among the French Embassy, the network of engineering schools n+i (a historic partner of this program), and the LACCD was signed last November during the LACCD Chancellor’s visit to Paris.

The theme of the bootcamp in Paris will the Olympic Games and sustainable development, and will host 20 LACCD students, selected based on their motivation and potential.

The mayors’ offices of Paris and Los Angeles are strongly involved in the project, which incorporates the components of youth involvement, university study, and the Olympic spirit of cooperation: the mayor’s office of Paris will provide the lodging for the entire duration of the stay as well as some additional benefits (access to cultural institutions, public transportation passes, etc.); the mayor’s office of Los Angeles will cover the plane tickets and the initiative will be implemented in the framework of mayor Eric Garcetti’s Mayor’s YoungAmbassadors program. 

This arrangement illustrates the relevance of the ambitious and innovative program which the French Embassy launched in 2016, which aims in the short-term to increase student mobility to France while engaging in the diversification of ethnic, cultural, and social points of view.

Foster the cooperation between Community Colleges and French Universities

In order to further foster the cooperation between Community Colleges and French Universities in all possible ways (recruitment, exchange programs, internships, …), the Cultural Services of the Embassy of France in the U.S. are taking a delegation of 7 to 10 Community College representatives to Paris in early November. The Cultural Services are currently building a program for November 5th to 7th.

There will be a day with discussion and presentations with French universities (Vice Chancellors for international relations or School Directors or Directors for international relations etc.). The next day, the delegation will visit one of the larger universities of the Parisian region with its different IUTs. On the last day (Nov. 7th), there will be presentations in the morning so that delegates could go back to the US in the afternoon.

The Cultural Services will be willing to sponsor 3 nights and the food as well as the transport in France. Travel to the US has to be sponsored by the participants or his/her organization.

For more information, please contact Katrin Gebhard, Attachée for Higher Education in New York, katrin.gebhard@diplomatie.gouv.fr


Kirkwood Community College - Students learn culture though virtual exchange

Article by Christina Uptain on March 1, 2019

Source: KirkwoodStudentMedia.com


Kirkwood Community College has increased its reputation by piloting a virtual exchange program in the Fall 2018 and Spring 2019 semesters. Students utilized technology to interact with pupils in other countries to get to know them and learn more about culture and education around the globe. 

“Our international department is all about global learning, and our vision is that every Kirkwood student, as well as faculty and staff, has an intercultural experience as part of their Kirkwood journey in some way,” said Dawn Wood, dean of International Programs. 

 “To many, the obvious option is to study abroad, and we try to make that as accessible to as many as possible but of course that doesn’t work for everybody, so we try to offer innovative ways right here on campus in the classroom, which is one of the ways we have used virtual exchange,” Wood continued. 

Multiple faculty have already participated in the pilot, including Assistant Professor of English Sondra Gates. “This is a way to connect Kirkwood to the rest of the world… not just for students but also for faculty and staff,” said Gates. “For my class, we worked with students from France… for the most part two KCC students were paired with one French student, utilizing their phones or laptops to video chat. The value for my writing students is that in addition to the exchange, they are learning about interviewing someone, writing about someone and researching another culture,” Gates explained. 

Jane Mingot, English teacher and International Relations Officer at UIT Orsay, was the facilitator of the virtual exchange in France who worked with Gates’ class and provided comments via email. “I believe language is more realistic and easier to learn in real-life situations… this project was the perfect opportunity to allow my students to realize the importance of communication and to gain the confidence to ask their American partners for clarification to understand each other,” Mignot wrote.   

“When walking around the class, I could hear a lot of laughter and the students were genuinely interested in learning about the American education system and daily life,” Mignot added. 

Gates, Wood and Mignot all agree that much positive feedback from both faculty and students has been received and all parties have enjoyed the experience overall. With a clear vision in mind and a plan already in action, Kirkwood will continue to work toward achieving its aggressive yet possible goal of opening the door to the world for anyone who is part of the family. 

For more information on study abroad or virtual exchange opportunities, please visit the International Programs department in 1154 Linn Hall or call 319-398-5579.


The Community College in France program in the press:
Reuters Sustainability - Creating equal opportunity for sustainability students
The New Yorker - Community College in Paris

Previous editions of the Community College in France program:
2018 bootcamp: Expanding Access to Affordable Study in France
2017 bootcamp: New and Affordable Opportunities to Study in France


Insight of the "Active Citizenship in The Digital Era" bootcamp

French covered the summer bootcamp in Caen on "Active Citizenship in the Digital Era".

Please have a look and discover this innovative program launched by the French Embassy in the US.







More information about the Bootcamp program 2020 is yet to come.