Étudier pendant un semestre à l’étranger, voyager à Cancun pendant les vacances de printemps, faire du bénévolat l’été entre des années à la fac. Jusque là, la tendance parmi les jeunes américains était de voyager pour des courtes durées, dans le cadre d’une expérience éducationnelle ou pour des simples détentes. Mais il y a de plus en plus de jeunes actifs et d’étudiants qui s’en fuient des États-Unis pour une durée indéterminée.
À la fin de leurs contrats en avril, les participants au programme TAPIF entrent tous dans une grosse période d’introspection. Après une année de rêve en France, ces jeunes doivent tout repenser de leurs avenirs.
Every language assistant, study abroad student, and (if you’re me in 2012) silly tourist on a four-day trip to Paris has a moment where they ask, “How can I stay here forever?” It’s a common thing, because life in France just seems so romantic…especially at the outset.
Seriously wanting to stay is a difficult impulse to satisfy, though; trying to find an answer is frustrating and can turn depressing pretty fast. You come across a bunch of blogs full of peoples’ pictures of their morning croissants, charming little French neighborhoods, and jaunts to Barcelona and Milan. These bloggers (myself included, up until this point at least) don’t even have the decency to explain how the hell they got to that “perfect” place!
Well, people tend to not explain their immigration stories because they’re not always 100% sure how they did it; it feels like luck (or was the result of marriage, which I’m not knocking, but you can’t just go get married). More typically, people don’t write it down because they haven’t actually figured out a forever plan for themselves.
It’s hard, for sure, but it’s not impossible! You have to really want it and be willing to make a series of (sometimes very lateral) moves before you find your long-term solution. With some realistic planning and stringing together a bunch of different experiences, you can find a way. Read on for real advice on how to become that expat person…ups and downs, uncertainties, and croissant Instagrams included.
V. important, y’all. Visuals to help you pick out an exotic locale for your next vineyard trip, based on your chemical dependence on Sancerre/Bordeaux/Riesling, etc. Continue reading
TAPIF, or the Teaching Assistant Program in France, is something very near and dear to me. Directly and indirectly, it inspired 99% of what I write about here.
The program isn’t perfect, but I’m endlessly grateful for the opportunities TAPIF has afforded me. In my opinion, there can never be enough first-hand accounts of the unique experience that teaching assistants have, so I’m hoping to add to the information that’s out there in an honest and complete way.
If you’re considering the program – or you’ve already applied and want to know what you’re really getting into – consider adding this post to you reading list. It’s a long one, but maybe it will answer the questions you have.
(Don’t mind the back of this girl’s head. I’m sure she’s lovely, though.)
Quartz published a really short but insightful article about a Brexit effect few have considered: How confusing the English used in the Eurozone will become without the UK’s influence.
The long and short of it is that a kind of “Euro English” — a sort of very negotiated, middle-ground style of English — has developed since the advent of the EU. It’s what’s used in official EU texts and even how officials talk to one another; it’s a jargon version of one of the main languages of the EU that’s quite different from the actual English language used by native speakers.
How did Euro English happen? Basically, “false friends” between other European languages (most notably French) and English have allowed for certain transformations of meaning to become acceptable in European Union-speak. The article’s best example of EU English is the word “delay.” In regular English, a delay is a hold-up that makes something occur later than expected. In Euro English, though, the word delay has been transformed to also mean a deadline or specific time-frame to accomplish something, because the French word “delai” means just that.
If Britain really does leave after this June’s referendum vote, it could mean that all legal texts and other documents produced by the EU will become further and further distinguished from “real” English. Ireland would become the de-facto guardian of English in the EU and, frankly, they may not have enough sway in the institution to keep things from devolving. The risk is that officials will have even more difficulties truly understanding one another and that interpretations of EU law will become even more varied and more dissociated from one another.
For the rest of the story on this bizarre, but very important, possible effect of the Brexit, read more below or at Quartz’ website.