Dr. Veronique Olivier (World Languages and Cultures) was recently awarded a $14,280 grant from the Cultural Services French Embassy in the United States’ Transatlantic Mobility Program. Dr. Olivier plans to continue facilitating virtual exchanges between Caen and Chapman students during the 2023-24 academic year. Ultimately, this initiative seeks to build a bilateral partnership that will enable Chapman students to spend a semester in Caen to complete an internship in one of the following domains: communication and languages, tourism (CCI), hospitality, and cinema as soon as Fall 2024.

Reciprocally, INSPE students will spend a semester at Chapman University and take various courses across campus while completing an internship in their area of specialization. Studying abroad is an important element of Chapman’s commitment to providing a personalized education leading to global citizenship.

This new grant continues an initiative begun by Dr. Olivier in spring 2021, when she received a $7,500 Transitioning Virtual Exchange grant from the Cultural Services of the French Embassy to partner with INSPE (Higher School for Teaching and Education, University of Caen Normandy) in Caen, France. The exchange was successful, and Dr. Olivier visited the INSPE campus in Caen in June 2022 to meet with French colleagues, including Dr. Elise Ouvrard, and to discuss a more developed and sustainable partnership. In spring 2023, Dr. Ouvrard and four of her students traveled to Chapman for a week of fruitful exchanges with Dr. Olivier’s Childhood in French literature, culture, and cinema course.

“The week that the students from CAEN visited was an invaluable experience; learning from the source about French culture and sayings among people our own age was incredible. It was a fantastic opportunity to engage with French students, bond with them through different activities such as a baseball game or a meal, and expand our knowledge of how the French education system works through lesson plans designed by the French students” – Calissa McNutt (Creative Writing BFA, French BA ‘25)

Additionally, in summer 2023, Dr. Olivier participated in a workshop at CSU Long Beach about “Le Français du Tourisme et de l’Hôtellerie,” sponsored by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy. As a result of the workshop, Dr. Olivier will create a new course entitled “Le Français du Tourisme et de l’Hospitalité” (French for Tourism and Hospitality) to prepare students who will complete an internship in Caen in Tourism and Hospitality.

In addition to the TMP grant, Dr. Olivier was awarded a $2,400 grant from the Albertine Cinematheque Committee to support a French film festival on campus. The grant will primarily be used to pay the screening fees for the six selected films.

(Photo in header: Photo of INSPE student Charly teaching a lesson in Dr. Olivier’s course during the Caen visit in Spring 2023