Well, you can with the University of Sydney’s and Sciences Po’s dual degree program.
I got to spend my time in rigorous and rewarding study taught by influential professors flown in from all over the world and meet distinguished alumni such as former French Presidents.
What are some of your highlight experiences from the program?
Aman: I think one of my favourite moments is rentrée solennelle (the official commencement of the academic year). Seeing 350 students from all over the world wearing formal attire or their cultural dresses, buzzing to start the year is an incredible atmosphere. The student community here is small, but incredibly strong, as living alone we are each other’s friends, but also family.
Bianca: Being able to move to Menton in the idyllic Côte D’Azur was one of my many highlight experiences. On campus, I co-established and was board member of associations such as the Student Support Alliance Menton and the Feminist Union Campus de Menton. As part of the Sciences Po Civic Learning Programme, I was able to intern at The Animal Fund (TAF) in Monaco and Studio A in Sydney. With TAF, I became one of their first Youth Ambassadors and with Studio A, I was able to be a volunteer artist facilitator and assist their renowned artists with commissions such as the large-scale mural at UTS ‘Bird Life Jungle Disco’.
Huay Yee: I’ve had many highlight experiences, but most prominently would be my work experience as a KAPseur. AFEV or Association de la Fondation Étudiante pour la Ville is a French non-profit association that I joined as part of our 2nd-year civic engagement requirement. To give myself an extra challenge, I joined their colocation or flat-sharing program with a friend. As part of the program, I had to interact on a weekly basis with town locals and other students from close by universities, in French, trying to create programs that would promote a sense of solidarity in our neighbourhoods. Through this, I was able to pick up way more French than I could have anticipated as well as get a more in-depth insight into the French culture.
Part of this degree program is studying with Sciences Po. What is your experience of studying with international students in France?
Aman: I'm studying at the Le Havre Campus in the north of France, which specialises in Asia and has over 60% international students. Studying with such a wide diversity of young intelligent people is amazing, as you learn new stories and perspectives every single day.
Bianca: I was fortunate to spend almost my full two years on the Menton campus before we had to switch to online classes due to the pandemic. I was able to meet extraordinary and remarkable students that truly came from all over the world and who each had a strong drive for academic excellence. There was an international scope to the way we learnt, approached student life, and our relationships with each other which only cultivated more meaningful connections and collaboration, and honestly enriched our personal lives as much as our educational experience. Though our studies were particularly rigorous and challenging, we had established a great esprits de corps (‘the spirit of the group’) which helped facilitate a relatively smooth transition to online learning.
Evangeline: Studying in France provided lots of challenges as my first university experience, but it was fun and opened my mind in lots of ways. It was a privilege to be part of Menton Campus where the small student body is very diverse and close-knit. All being fresh-face uni students together in a new place means you can bond and tackle the difficulties of living and studying in a foreign country together. I also loved the smaller, more intimate classes where you really had the opportunity to get to know your teachers, classmates, and the subject matter.
Huay Yee: Honestly, you would find the most passionate, open-minded, and brightest young people. Coming from all walks of life and all over the globe, it will not be surprising if you find someone who pushes you to think completely differently than you have before. Studying with such a diverse group of people will motivate you to look outside of what you know and learn about countries you may never have ever heard of before such as Albania, Estonia, or even Mongolia. It is eye-opening and a great way of learning about other countries and cultures.
Tahlia: It has been really interesting so far to hear different student’s opinions on the same topic, and how their takes are influenced by where they’re from. For example, the opinions of students from the US are quite unique and specific to what we are learning, since the pathway I am studying relates to North America and Europe. Just these differences in opinion have already made me see things in a completely new way that I probably wouldn’t have considered otherwise.
Most students are international, which means you get heaps of people from Europe but also across the world on a small regional campus. This was probably one of the most rewarding things about the program- the variety of people you meet and the possibility for cultural exchange exists on a scale that is much more intimate than other bigger international universities.
How did the degree prepare you for life after completion, what has it led to and/or allowed you to do/achieve?
Evangeline: The Dual Degree program provided me with a plethora of experiences and studies that enabled me to figure out my interests and what I wanted to do next. My passion for peace and conflict resolution work has emerged from my studies of languages, international relations and the Middle East at Sciences Po and Sydney Uni. I had both a broad and specialised academic base to confidently pursue my Masters in Peace and Conflict studies that I am currently undertaking. Importantly, the program also developed my resilience, independence and courage, skills that have helped me become a Nationally Accredited Mediator, work at the Asylum Seekers Centre and next year join the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade graduate program.
I learnt so many job-ready, transferable skills through the program such as good writing, time management, teamwork, analysis, and communication.
The Bachelor of Arts (Dual Degree, Sciences Po, France) and the Bachelor of Economics (Dual Degree, Sciences Po, France) are just two of the international opportunities supported by Strategic Partnerships and Engagement in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, and Sydney Abroad.
Banner image: Photo of Sciences Po Menton Campus by Bianca Liclican