• INSIDER'S PARIS: Personalized, small classes taught by working Parisians
• CITY IS YOUR CLASSROOM: Learn outside of the classroom
• ENGLISH LANGUAGE: Courses taught in English
What makes this Athena?
• EXCLUSIVE: Program only available for Athena students
• CLASS SIZE: 1-on-1 time with instructors
• HEART: Chance to be in, and part, of the heart of Paris
PICA and Athena have a very special relationship. The Directors at PICA in partnership with Athena collaborated with Whittier College to develop a study abroad program in Paris that provides an immersive liberal arts program that is accessible to students of all academic, artistic, and French language levels.
Founded in 2014, PICA provides you with inside access learning to all that Paris has to offer.
You will use Paris as your classroom setting, with museums, working studios and excursions being a primary part of your learning experience.
What separates this program from other Paris programs is our personalization, and working Parisians giving you access to their world. Get hands on experience working alongside professionals in their studios & witness the creative process. If you’re not comfortable being just a number, then this program is for you.
Courses have the following % breakdown:
|COURSES||General % Offered|
Bitten by the travel bug, Michael spent his freshman year of college in Paris and hasn’t stopped exploring since (with two more stays to study in Paris and one in Rome). Michael taught many years in the U.S., before moving to Europe and teaching for four years in Italy, two years on Athena’s Paros Island, Greece program and for the last six years in Paris.
This is not your typical lecture hall program; your classroom will be the city, in professional art studios, world class art galleries and museums, photography labs, bookmaking facilities, and on the course field trips.
In Paris, the field trips and excursions are an integral part of the academic program. You’ll head to the sites where history was created in Paris and beyond. Field trips may vary each term, but typical options are:
• Loire Valley Chateaux
• Normandy Region
• Burgundy region
• Champagne region
• Chateau & Parc de Fontainebleau
• Chateau de Vaux le Vicomte
• Chartres Cathedra
• The program includes accommodations in dormitories and/or shared apartments (varies by term). Homestays are available upon request at an additional fee.
• All housing options are located within the Paris city limits and are easily accessible to the city center & school buildings via public transportation and/or walking.
Yes! First off, several excursions and field trips are included in the program. Secondly, if you are looking for independent travel, there will be time to travel on your own, especially for semester programs.
A typical program will have anywhere from 4-15 students on the program. This makes for an incredibly personal and high-quality study abroad experience, things we at Athena pride ourselves on.
Delicious! Prepare yourself for rich, creamy dishes. France is known for having incredible food, and Paris has a great variety of restaurants.
Vegetarians: Athena’s resident vegetarian gives this an 8 out of 10 for being vegetarian friendly! (Oh, and about a 6 out of 10 for vegan friendliness…)
Yes! You can certainly request who you would like to have as your roommate. This is done after you are accepted into the program; you will note this in your housing request forms.
We have partnered with STA Travel, an incredible student-focused travel agency. The good people there will be able to help all Athena students arrange flights overseas.
Past students have shared their experiences through blogs. Check them out to get first-hand accounts of what life is really like!READ THE BLOGS
'Studying abroad in Paris has been one of the greatest experiences of my life. I had
the opportunity to see and do so much... I absolutely loved the flexibility and support I was given..'
Columbia College Chicago
Truly the “City of Lights,” Paris lights up not only your mind, but at night, the city is lit up with inspiring street lights and strung lights across the avenues. There’s a reason Paris is such a romanticized city; it has a charm and depth that few cities in the world have. To actually get a chance to live in this historic capital means you will have your eyes opened to a whole new way of looking at the world … and you will be spoiling your taste buds with the amazing food.
CITY PERKS: If you’re a big-city, big-culture person, then Paris should be on your short list of where to study… Enjoy incredible cuisine, cultural institutions, & architecture.
There is a Statue of Liberty in Paris that faces the Statue of Liberty in America, symbolizing the countries’ friendship.
In the whole of Paris, there is only one stop sign. The traffic system in Paris is mainly based on giving way to those coming from the right.