Since 1985, French Heritage Society has sponsored a summer educational program for American and French college students to develop cultural exchanges in the field of historic preservation. Students benefit from hands-on practical experience in each other’s countries. Internships offer exceptional opportunities for students in the fields of architecture, cultural management, art history, preservation and horticulture.
French students serve as interns at FHS sponsored projects, museums or cultural institutions in the United States, while their American counterparts work at French museums, châteaux or historic buildings; they aid in restoration work or serve as tour guides. The programs expose students to the complex processes of architectural maintenance and restoration; and provide opportunities to live and interact with a French host family, often in a landmarked home.
Katherine Reid, Middlebury intern at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris said, “In addition to my responsibilities, my advisors gave ample opportunity to explore every aspect of the museum, from the archives to the administrative work required to put on an exhibition and to maintain the permanent collections. Despite the fact that I was the only intern who did not formally study art history, I worked as much as the others (graduate students at the Sorbonne and the École du Louvre).”
Rebecca Montross from Cornell, intern at the École nationale supérieure du paysage Versailles, enthused: “I had visited Versailles as a teenager, and had studied its incredible gardens for a class, but never imagined that I would have the privilege of living and working there. To be not just another tourist snapping photos, but to be on the other side of the camera, part of the picture, within the landscape, within the frame created by its perspective lines reaching out towards infinity, was nothing short of a dream for a student of Landscape Architecture.”