Alumni News

  • “Since graduating from USC last year, I have been working for Generosity Water, a non-profit humanitarian organization working to end the clean water crisis in developing countries.

    Generosity Water has recently produced a feature-length documentary called La Source, which tells the story of a Princeton janitor, Josue Lajeunesse, and his journey to bring clean water to his home community in Haiti. The film has been met with rave reviews, and has been featured at film festivals around the world."

    -Anna Lindtjorn, AB  '13: (French)

  • "I graduated from USC in the spring of 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in International Relations and minors in French and in Forensics and Criminality.  I thoroughly enjoyed my experience studying French at USC. The program complemented the study of International Relations in addition to fostering my own personal interest in francophone culture.  I was able to develop a comprehensive understanding of the French language in the context of history, literature, and the diverse francophone cultures while also pursuing independent and group projects in personal areas of interest.  The breadth and depth of knowledge and opportunity provided through the courses and professors far exceeded my expectations.  I was able to research and write both fiction and academic pieces in addition to studying French film.  I found each class to be highly interactive which was further supported by small class sizes and active participation.  I am now working in Washington, DC in the United States Senate.  My experience at USC and in the French program helped to develop a foundation that will continue to be valuable to me as I take the next steps in my career."

    -Ellen Freedman, AB’11 (International Relations, minors in French and Forensics and Criminality)

  • “I graduated from USC in May 2011, and have since been working towards a degree in international economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, DC. I was an international relations and business major at USC, but I can honestly say that my coursework in the French Department was the highlight of my studies. While small, the department provides the most dedicated and lively professors I had at USC. The mix of creative (culturally relevant literature and music) and practical (business vocabulary and resumé work) kept me enrolled in the department long after my requirements had been met. I will never forget my first night as a study abroad student in Paris, where I found myself singing "Aux Champs-Elysées" with my host family, delighted that I'd heard it in a USC French class before. I still visit that family every year. The tools I learned and love for francophone cultures I developed through the department have shaped not only my career path, but also my curiosity and appreciation for the world around me. The passion I inherited from the USC French Department faculty have allowed me to enter seamlessly into the rich international environment of our nation's capital, where I have found great satisfaction in the network that my French ability allows.“

    -Lauren Goodwin, AB’11 (International Relations/Business)

  • “I graduated from USC in May 2011 with a degree in international relations and violin. After graduating, I moved to Washington where I am pursuing a part-time Master’s in Public Policy at Georgetown while working in a full-time position with the Government of Québec, which maintains 26 delegations around the world. In my current job, one of my most interesting responsibilities is to coordinate Québec’s participation in the Francophonie Festival of DC, during which all of the Francophone embassies in Washington collaborate to present a month-long series of cultural programming. I speak and write in French about 75% of the time at work and I wouldn’t be able to keep up if it were not for the valuable learning experience I received at USC, from great classes to the opportunity to study abroad. USC prepared me for everything I needed to succeed – except for Québécois accents!”

    -Timothy Johnson, AB’11 (International Relations/Violin)

  • “I graduated from USC in 2010 with a BA in French and International Relations, and a minor in Environmental Social Sciences.  My experience with the French program at USC was a very positive one. The classes were very interesting, and I sometimes looked forward to them more than any of my other classes at USC. The faculty is very approachable and really passionate about what they teach. I managed to develop a strong relationship with several of them. . . .  I am currently a consultant with Capgemini Consulting, a strategy and transformation consultancy firm in Paris, France.  The French program helped me greatly as it allowed me to develop my French language skills, which are imperative as I work mostly in French. Furthermore, I got my first exposure to French culture through the French program, which made it far easier for me to settle in Paris.”

    -Abhinay Jhaveri, AB’10 (International Relations/French, minor in Environmental Social Sciences)

  • “I graduated from USC in May 2012 and am so glad that I added my French minor to my Business Administration major.  I loved getting to know the professors and my fellow French students.  The department is a nice size such that you really do know a majority of the staff and students.  I had the chance to study abroad in Paris for a semester with some of my closest friends in the department and meet even more USC French department students.  Those 5 months were some of the most important in my French development because speaking French everyday with my host mother, my teachers, and everyone on the streets of Paris reinforced all that had been taught in grammar, speaking, and culture lessons.  By the end of my time abroad I could confidently say that I was fluent in French, thanks to a great foundation cultivated in classes at USC and refined in Paris. 

    I am currently working as a management consultant in Los Angeles but still have many ties to the Francophile world, through my teachers and friends in the USC French department as well as friends I made while studying in France.  I work to keep up my French because I hope to return to France a little further along in my career.  I’ve explored companies that would allow me to work in either finance or consulting abroad and sincerely plan on completing my MBA in France to get a better understanding of French business.  While these goals were fleeting and seemed too difficult a few years ago, thanks to the support of the faculty in the USC French department, I’ve taken the first steps toward my international career dreams.  I am reassured knowing that, even as an alumna, I have the great support network to reach out to when I look for assistance. “

    -Tricia Craig, AB’12 (Business Administration, minor in French)

  • “My experience with USC's French department was wonderful. The faculty is excellent and I definitely saw my level of French grow by leaps and bounds after every semester of taking a class offered by the French department.

    The most important strength of the program, though there were many, was the relevance of the material taught and how it related to everyday life. Some courses like Business and Technical French with Professor Atiyeh Shorwai were, at least for me, invaluable. This particular course was like a crash course on everything you need to know from language to logistics in order to conduct business in a Francophone setting.

    I now work as a Programs Assistant at Relief International, a humanitarian NGO that focuses on International Development and Emergency Response. My ability to read, speak, and conduct business in French enabled me to assist the entire organization with Country Registration and logistics in Haiti, so that we could carry out Emergency Response efforts in response to the 2010 Haitian earthquake. I was the only person on staff in the HQ offices, (not deployed to Haiti), that was able to contact embassies and Haitian bureaus in order to expedite Relief International's humanitarian actions.

    I am planning, in the near future, on pursuing a Masters degree in International Development, and strongly considering a school in France, My proficiency in French will make me a more attractive candidate and in turn help me gain the theoretical knowledge, that paired with my work experience and technical skills, will allow me to bridge the path to development for many vulnerable communities in the world.”

    -Maria Alegria, AB’10 (International Relations, minors in French and Peace and Conflict Studies)

  • “I graduated from USC in 2011 with a B.A. in French and International Relations. I am currently working on my M.A. in International Educational Development at Teachers College, Columbia University. I plan to become a specialist in international education policy and planning. My interest in comparative education grew from my experiences as a USC student living, studying, and working as an intern in Paris and Geneva. The French courses I took at USC helped prepare me for the rigorous academic demands of a French elite institution, Sciences Po, and to work effectively in the international environment of the UNESCO International Bureau of Education. The faculty in the French Department not only provided me with valuable academic knowledge and skills, but also nourished my curiosity and supported my career and life goals outside of the classroom. In addition, the French Department provided me with a much-needed grant to participate in the internship program in Switzerland; this experience affirmed my desire to work for an international organization. I had a great experience with the French program at USC and I’m incredibly grateful for it.”

    -Adriana Lovera, AB’11 (French/International Relations)