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Housing: There's No Place Like Home

Housing, housing, housing. Bien sur, c'est tres importante! (Of course, it is very important!) After all, you will be living in your respective city for the span of (at least) three or four months. So before allowing your past experiences (terrible roommate, loud hall, etc.) to cloud your initial thoughts on housing, please read below. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised with what you come to find.

One of the many great things about CEA is that you are given options in terms of housing. Before arriving, you have the opportunity to decide between living in an apartment or with a French host family. (Having the opportunity to choose your place of residence was not something experienced by the majority of students that I have met who journeyed here through other study abroad programs thus far from other schools and programs.) Being heavily involved in ResLife and serving as a Resident Assistant for the past two years, I opted to reside in an apartment. As a graduating senior I felt the desire to experience being more independent, and I can honestly say, I LOVE it! Here's why.

[Check out the official CEA Cribs video, posted below!]

In terms of cleaning/ living habits in general, following our first week, when everyone was settled in, we came up with a cleaning schedule. Each person is responsible for cleaning the apartment one day of the week with either one or two partners. This ensures that the kitchen, bathroom and other common areas are thoroughly cleaned at least three times a week.

Whatever you choose, keep in mind that your home experience is truly what you make it! Realize that everyone is different, with different ideas and opinions and learn to work with that. Flexibility allows for greater happiness.

"Where we love is home- home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts."- Oliver Wendell Holmes


Kara Henderson is Fall 2013 CEA MOJO in Aix-en-Provence, France. She is currently a junior at the University of Pittsburgh.

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