“I love the culture of music in Paris. It is everywhere: on the street, in the metro station, in the parks. I can feel the passion of the artists, and it really brings the city to life.”
Paris: The 'City of Light'
The capital of France and one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world, Paris is located at the intersection of culture, history, art, fashion and academia. The past and the present meet on every street, and you are reminded at every moment of the city’s long and glorious history as the birthplace and heart of intellectual and historical currents that have shaped the way the world is today. The list of superlatives that could be used to describe this wondrous city does not end, but it is not until you actually arrive that you can experience its true magic.
The mélange of magnificent landmarks is well known, and perhaps unparalleled among the world’s great cities. This has inspired generations of artists, visitors, students, intellectuals, and people of all kinds to settle within the city’s boundaries. Today, this results in an eclectic mix of different cultures and people, and the city has something to offer for everyone, whether you are looking for fine art, to polish your French skills, sample cuisine from all around the world, or a chance to study at some of the world’s oldest and most prestigious universities.
Words cannot do justice to the riches that the city holds. You will soon discover the secrets and wonders of Paris that await you behind every corner.
For general information on what awaits you in Paris, please consult the following links:
University Life in Paris
Paris is especially well known as a hub of intellectual thought, and is home to over 50,000 international students and over 300,000 students in total. Some of the world’s top universities are located here, which has created a strong research network and many opportunities for students to become involved in the city’s vibrant intellectual life. The Sorbonne university system, of which Paris 1 is a part of, is the second oldest in the world, and over the centuries it has gained an internationally recognized reputation as one of the global leaders in higher education.
In 2013, Paris was ranked number one on the QS Best Student Cities list, the second consecutive year it received this esteemed title. Relatively low tuition fees make it a more affordable destination than many other student cities, but the quality of education is among the most respected in the world. Of course, the high quality of life and access to the city’s many great features are what really cause it to stand out and make the student experience an unforgettable one.
Most of your classes in the first year Master’s program will be held at the Maison Sciences Economiques (MSE), accessible by Metro at the Campo Formio stop on Line 5. This is located only a few minutes away from the famous Latin Quarter, and being the center of the Department of Economics of the Sorbonne, you will have easy access to a host of resources, including libraries and professors, that make the learning environment hard to beat.
- Centre de Documentation, MSE Address: Maison des Sciences Economiques 106/112 Boulevard de l’Hopital 13e Phone: (33) 01 44 07 83 42
- La Bibliotheque du Centre Pierre Mendes France (PMF) Address: 90 Rue de Tolbiac 13e Fifth Floor Phone: (33) 01 44 07 88 14
- Public Library – The National Library Francois Mitterand This library is located approximately 20 minutes walking from the MSE and students can borrow books for free after registering for a library card.
Paris offers a variety of different housing options for students. Due to the large student population, it is essential to begin your housing search a few weeks before you arrive to the city. These are the most popular options for PSME students:
- Cite Universitaire The Cite Universitaire is home to thousands of students from around the world. Its campus is located in the southern part of Paris and has a student restaurant, libraries, multiple sports facilities, and student events that go on all year long. Twenty spots are reserved for PSME students at the Cite each year, and rents vary between 350 and 550 Euros per month.
- CROUS The Univeristy of Paris 1 also reserves spaces in these residences, located around the city, for its students. For more information contact the university.
Private Housing Option
Finding a room in Paris can be quite expensive and will require a lot of searching and waiting in lines. However, it is a good way to immerse yourself in the French culture, especially through colocations (shared apartments). Rents start at around 500 Euros per month, but a central location will require you to pay much higher amounts.
To search for private rooms or colocations start with the following websites: Facebook Groups:
- Colocation Paris
- Plan Appart/Coloc Paris entre Potes
- ERASMUS Paris
Sports and Free Time
“For me, I love the gardens, especially during the summer, and the many beautiful bridges that span the Seine. Paris is a city where every walk brings a new adventure.”
Paris has a number of different parks, such as Jardin du Luxembourg and Jardin des Plantes, where people go to play sports, have picnics, or just catch a break from city life. When the weather is nice, people flock to the parks and the banks of the Seine to sit and enjoy a picnic or a drink with friends. Cheap bikes are a great way to discover the city on a sunny day. Check out Velib.com for information.
There are many options for students to participate in organized sports as well. Here are some of the more popular ones:
The nightlife in Paris is as diverse as the city itself. Going out can be expensive, but if you know where to go you don’t have to splurge. Some of the most popular places for bars and clubs are Oberkampf, Bastille, and Rue Mouffetard. To locate the bars having happy hour specials at any time check out: www.mistergoodbeer.com For other nightlife-related events consult:
Another activity that is popular among students is traveling, which is made convenient by the city’s central location and excellent infrastructure. Students are advised to purchase an ImagineR pass from your local Metro station. On the weekends, travel within Ile de France is free with this pass. In addition, students can purchase a Carte Jeune for 50 Euros per year, which gives a guaranteed 25 to 60% off train tickets. High-speed trains run to London, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Brussels, and Munich. Cheap airlines run out of the three Paris airports as well. Train information can be found here: www.sncf.com/fr
Culture and Arts
Access is free to most museums in Paris for students under 26 years old. Theaters, cinemas, and opera houses often offer substantial discounts as well, and the city is able to attract major musical artists for concerts in its many state of the art venues.www.offi.fr
There are a number of student restaurants located throughout Paris that allow students to enjoy hearty meals for under 4 Euros. Although not known for cheap prices, the city does offer superb quality and diversity in its selection of restaurants, and is home to some of the most renowned chefs in the world.
Check out this website for great dining options: La Fourchette Be sure to check out the many ethnic restaurants around Garde du Nord and Place d’Italie to sample food from around the world!