As we are wrapping up our program, the atmosphere in our classes is beginning to frighteningly resemble classes in Evanston. Admittedly, the beginning of our program left us with ample free time, light work loads, and carefree mindsets. That is not to say that we weren’t learning. Our classes are and have been extremely interesting the entire quarter. All of the course material that we have learned has been amplified by the fact that we are learning it in Paris, a geographically-relevant location for our studies.
However, now that we are reaching finals, the all-too-familiar finals stress and anxiety have set in. In these last 2 weeks, the public health program has finished all but one of our courses. However, this class entails writing a 100 page (1.5, not double, spaced) group research paper along with an hour long presentation.
As stressful as writing a 100 page research paper in about 2 weeks would normally be, this anxiety is coupled with the frenzy that is accompanied with our imminent departure from Paris. All of us Northwestern students, not just the public health students, are scrambling to squeeze out every last bit of the Parisian experience that we can in these last few days. In between our hours of researching, group meetings, and essay-writing, we scramble to visit every last museum on our list (I finally saw the Mona Lisa), try that last quintessential Parisian dish, or enjoy our last espresso in a corner café.
This mix of stress from our finals, sadness from our inevitable departure from Paris, and excitement from our return to our native homes makes these last few days quite overwhelming. Wish us luck.