A Language of My Own

Jillian Morneau is a student at the Stevens Institute of Technology and an ISA Featured Blogger. She studied with ISA in Lille, France.


After being in Lille for 2 weeks, I feel like I have a good grasp on life here. I know Lille definitely doesn’t have the name recognition of Paris, but it hands down is my favorite French city. When I was younger I always dreamed of living in Paris, and I think I still might, but Lille feels like home.


Being a sixth burrow of New York City dweller, I understand what it takes to live in a fast paced world, but Lille is very calm. It has a sense of community that big cities can’t compete with, but at the same time it has everything a big city has to offer. Shopping, museums and parks–Lille has it all. I don’t feel like Lille lacks anything. It has its vast history but also has its modern necessities. Grocery stores are easy to come by and without the metro and buses system it would be very hard to see all of the city.




Studying abroad seemed like a difficult task before I came here. I didn’t know any French. And I mean I didn’t know any French. I still don’t really know any French. I have managed to develop a language of my own. As a student of Spanish, French words are very difficult to say. When in doubt, I just say the word in Spanish. I probably sound crazy, but its all I have right now. Everyone in my ISA group here in Lille has been very supportive and are always trying to teach me a little French, whether it be introducing myself or how to order a Latte at a coffee shop. As scared as I was I definitely don’t regret being here one bit. It is definitely a summer of a lifetime and can’t wait to share more of my journey!


What’s your excuse for not getting out into the world, learning a new language, and finding a new culture? The world awaits!