Study abroad in Angers, France
For students interested in studying international agriculture, agribusiness, or horticulture, the Department of Agriculture offers a four week study abroad program in Angers, France.
At Ecole Superieure d’ Agriculture, located outside of the Loire Valley, students have the opportunity to learn about a wide range of animal and crop production practices. During their time abroad, students have time to explore Paris, meet with French farmers and agribusiness representatives, and take part in regular classes and field trips. During the fourth week of the program, participants are able to specialize in agribusiness, horticulture, or international marketing and finance. The course instruction is taught in English and students will earn six credits during the program.
Two Department of Agriculture students that took part in the program in Summer 2017 were Danielle Cornwell and Dana Cocanig. Both students spoke of how they loved the study abroad experience and experiencing a new culture. When speaking of her study abroad experience Cocanig said, “I was able to learn from a different point of view. It is one thing to learn about a culture and way of life through a book or lecture, but when you go to see it and indulge yourself in that lifestyle is when you really learn about the culture.”
As well as broadening a student’s perspective on culture, as many study abroad programs do, the program in Angers broadens its participants’ knowledge of agriculture. At Illinois State University, the Department of Agriculture is able to educate students in different horticulture and agricultural practices through the Horticulture Center and University Farm but the study abroad program educates students on more than the typical corn and soybeans.
“I learned a lot more about organic agriculture and inter-cropping techniques used. I also learned about cheese and wine production which is something we have very little exposure to here in central Illinois,” Cornwell stated. Cocanig spoke of how, “Some of the ways farmers worked or the techniques they used on their animals were things I didn’t know were possible, let alone anything I would ever hear in the United States. For an example, we visited a cattle farmer who did not believe in using antibiotics, instead he used acupuncture and essential oils on any cattle that were ill. He found that it worked too.”
Apply to Study Abroad!
Students wanting to take part in the study abroad program in the Summer 2018 semester will need to apply by March 1, 2018. Department of Agriculture students can apply for one of the four $500 scholarships offered for agriculture students participating in the French Exchange Program, also due by March 1.
“You get to travel and get college credit. If you want to see Europe, you can after the month in France. You’re already over there…Do it, you won’t regret it!” Cornwell says.
For more information, visit the Department of Agriculture website.