Finding a Maymester

Hi Everyone!

My name is Lucy Rizzo and I recently finished my first year at Holy Cross this past Monday. The year has completely flown by and I am sad to think about how quickly is it all going. Luckily for me, I get to extend my freshman year by four weeks on the upcoming Maymester to Paris.  

My friends and I in Boston during the last few weeks of classes.

While it may come as a surprise, going on this Maymester was not initially in my (or my parents) plans. In my “Intro to Academic Writing Class” first semester, a classmate projected an image of the Paris Maymester information session poster during one of our classes. The assignment was to describe and analyze everything we saw. I saw Monet’s Japanese water bridge painting, (my all time favorite artist), the Chartres Cathedral stained glass rose window, and an image of the Louvre museum. After listing all of these off to my classmates and Professor, a friend looked at me and said “Lucy you should probably go to this meeting.” One information session later, I called my parents and told them the plan. They both laughed it off, and when I arrived home for winter break with an acceptance in hand, they both looked at me stunned, thinking I was joking when I initially told them. Five months later and I’m less than a week out!

The information session poster that first sparked my interest in the program.

I am both excited and nervous for many different reasons. Having never spoken French, or even sat in on a single class, my only experience with the language is through Duolingo. The frustrating part about this is that I have only learned how to say cat, dog, horse, and croissant. I am also nervous about getting lost around the city and not being able to communicate with others to find my way around. I’ve heard the horror stories of Parisians yelling in American’s faces for not speaking French to them, so I’m google translating “Do you speak English?” in french, as I write this now. I’m sure the french class I will be taking will at the University will calm my anxiety around this, but for now I will continue my Duolingo practice on how to correctly pronounce “dog”.

Despite my language insecurities, I am so excited to discover a new city. I have studied French art and history for the last three years and took a modern french course my first semester at Holy Cross. It was amazing! I can’t wait to see the paintings, sculptures, monuments, and buildings I have seen through textbook pictures in person for the first time.

I am so excited to take you on this incredible journey with me on my first adventure abroad!

More to come tomorrow!



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