Frequently Asked Questions
1. How do I go about planning for my departure and stay in Paris?
Marist in Paris offers a comprehensive pre-departure program that takes place via e-mail and the web in the months prior to departure. Some topics covered as part of the pre-departure program include, but are not limited to room and board, visas, academic expectations, books and school supplies, travel, healthcare abroad, course registration, money management etc.
2. What kind of accommodations are available in Paris?
Masters students may choose to house directly through the College or can secure housing on their own. Note – all students seeking a visa will need to have these accommodations in place prior to departure in order to secure the visa.
Marist offers double room accommodations in apartments located throughout the city. Each apartment has 1-4 bedrooms, a living area, kitchen and at least one bathroom. All Marist apartments have internet, and basic utilities included in the price. All apartments are furnished and include basic bed linens, and kitchen cookware/utensils.
3. I have never been abroad before; will I be comfortable in Paris?
Paris is a prime destination for its culture and sense of style. The city of lights is home to great works of public art, museums of all description, and an important center of fashion design and industry. Thousands of American and international students call this city home every year – and there is no shortage of activities and entertainment to make everyone feel at home. Paris is also a relatively small city by global standards, with walking and biking common ways to see the city or commute, as well as an excellent, easily understood system of public transit. Paris is also well-located for travel around Europe either by air or train.
4. I don't speak French. Is it difficult to live in Paris without French language skills?
No previous experience with the French language is necessary. Paris is a friendly city for English-speaking students. Students, upon arrival, find it easy to buy supplies, move about the city, and arrange trips and travel, all with minimal language skills in French. During orientation, students will be provided with some “survival French” training, and will also be encouraged to pursue strengthening that skill on their own as they spend the year in Paris. The majority of French citizens of student age, speak some English, although a bit hesitantly at times. Meet them halfway with an attempt at basic French, and communication will go well.
5. How do I travel to Paris?
Because our students come from all over the country and the world we do not usually organize group flights for students in our Master’s program. We have a relationship with a travel agent who specializes in student travel who can assist you with booking your flight, and for nervous travelers, we can arrange for students to fly on the same flight for companionship (when possible). We urge all students to review the travel section of the pre-departure program prior to booking travel to ensure you have all of the necessary information (i.e. the correct airport, orientation start date, etc.).
6. Who else studies with Marist in Paris?
Marist enrolls students from its home campus and other American campuses in several programs in Paris. At Mod-Spe, there is a semester intensive program in fashion product development, as well as a summer internship program, in addition to this Masters program.
7. What kind of living and miscellaneous expenses should I expect to have?
This is a difficult question to answer, as students will live differently depending on background, taste, and travel goals. Most students can live comfortably on 100-200 Euro a week, including meals, pocket money, and small travel. Students who cook in their apartments will save money, in addition to experiencing the French method of shopping and enjoying outstandingly fresh foods. More extravagant trips and shopping will increase that budget.
8. What about safety and security?
Paris is a vibrant, bustling city with a relatively low crime rate. Obviously, students should always exercise the utmost caution and respect their environment, but Marist students in Paris have enjoyed a very low incident report over the past several years. An occasional theft or minor incident may occur, which happens in any city-campus environment. Students are provided with appropriate plans of action as part as part of orientation and have access to a Marist/Mod-Spe office in Paris to assist them with any issues.
9. Do I need a passport?
Yes. If you don't already have one, you should apply immediately either at the U.S. passport web page or your home country’s passport office.
10. Do I need a student visa?
All students who are not passport holding citizens of the European Union are required to apply for a student visa. The student visas are sponsored by Marist Paris and are issued for the academic year (fall and spring semesters). Students can extend their visa/residence permit past spring based on each student’s summer enrollment. This process will be organized through the College in the spring semester.
11. How do I get a visa?
All U.S. Citizens will apply for their student visa prior to departure through the French Consulates in the United States. During the pre-departure process, Marist offers assistance with the visa process in the form of instruction for individual appointments.
12. Will I be eligible for financial aid?
U.S. citizens enrolled in the Marist location in Paris are eligible for federal financial aid.