The goal of the International Media Seminar is to combine the excitement of spending Spring Break in Paris with a substantial and unique learning experience, focused on the changing nature of communications media in a new global environment. During the course of the Spring Break vacation--from March 10-16, 2013--students will meet and talk with some two dozen international media leaders: journalists, executives, scholars, and government officials. Meetings will be held in classrooms, media offices, production facilities and private homes--offering a rare opportunity for a "behind the scenes" experience. Free time will also be provided for seeing the sites and enjoying the city. Student participants have consistently found the Paris Media seminar to be a highlight of their University careers--introducing them to new places, new perspectives, and new personalities. As one recent participant put it: "The Paris trip was life changing…the trip of a lifetime."
For the past six years, students at The George Washington University have been able to participate in the Paris Seminar as part of a regular three-credit SMPA course (SMPA 3195, "Globalization and the Media"), open to all GW undergraduate and graduate students. The program is taught and chaired by Professor Lee Huebner. Because this course includes a week long study abroad session, registration for the class is not handled in the conventional way, but rather by applying on-line through GW’s Study Abroad Office. The Washington D.C. portion of the course will meet once every two weeks before and after the Spring Break; students will have their choice of enrolling in one of two sections, both meeting on Wednesdays--either from 9:35 am to 10:50 am OR from 5:10 pm to 6:25 pm. Read a more detailed description of the Spring 2013 course and trip. You can also view the Spring 2012 itinerary and Spring 2013 course syllabus. These vary slightly each year, but should be a good guide to what will happen next March. Questions about the trip and the course can be addressed to Professor Huebner at email@example.com.
Students with professors Shanahan and Huebner
A discussion with Anne Bagamery from the International Herald Tribune
Students gather in the Parisian apartment of CNN's Jim Bittermann
Enjoying a boat ride along the Seine
Both the course and the Paris Seminar are designed to give undergraduate and graduate students an opportunity to study the global media landscape from a truly international perspective—not only in theory, but in fact. By talking with a wide array of experts who live and work in a foreign media environment, students are able to see familiar media issues in a new light—even as they become more familiar with other media cultures.
Student reactions to this experience were represented by one recent GW participant who wrote: "It was an amazing week. If I could do it again next year, I would."
Another student added: "I felt like a kid in a candy store with all the speakers and visits. The seminar helped give me some focus as I continue down the path toward international journalism and start to plan my post GW life."
Further testimonials from students:
"Since returning from the trip, I've kept in touch with many of the programs' students... For six days I was fortunate enough to hear from some of the brightest media experts from around the globe.”
"...the trip was beautifully organized and allowed students to explore the city intellectually and culturally."
"It ended too quickly!"
"This was an incredible experience!...I recommend it to everyone...."
"...a view of Paris I will never get again....it was so great that our group was invited into speakers' apartments and got to see such a genuine and personal view of Paris."