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Following French from Madagascar to L.A.


Elizabeth Collins ’10  follows her passion for French, and it's taken her far. Right after Hamilton, she taught English at a public high school on the island of Réunion — a French island in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Madagascar, where the French government hires young people to be language assistants in public schools.

From there, Collins taught French for two years at a private schools in Ann Arbor, Mich. She’s also led trips to France and taught at summer language camps. Now things have taken a more academic turn.

Collins is in  a doctoral program in French and Francophone studies at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her study abroad in Paris when she was at Hamilton was a major influence on her career and academic path. She studied French in part because it allowed her to pursue her many interests – history, literature, sociology, art history, government and more.

“Following your passion and considering your post-graduation future don’t have to be mutually exclusive,” she says. “The experiences I’ve had, the skills that I have acquired, and the connections I’ve made thanks to my study of French combined with Hamilton’s emphasis on communication and writing have opened many doors for me so far.”

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