Preparing to Go: Strasbourg

Overview

Contact Information and Center Address

Syracuse Strasbourg Staff Contact Information

Dr. Raymond Bach, Director, rebach@syr.edu
Dr. Mary Boyington, Assistant Director, mcboying@syr.edu
Alison Bayart, Assistant to the Director, ambayart@syr.edu
Mick Hardenberg, Housing & Community Internship Coordinator, mhardenb@syr.edu

Syracuse Strasbourg Address

Université de Syracuse
19 Quai Rouget de Lisle
67000 Strasbourg, France

Social media

Instagram: @syracuseabroad or @SUStrasbourg
Facebook: Syracuse University in Strasbourg


Traveling to Strasbourg

Visa

U.S. citizens will not need to obtain a French visa for the Fall 2020 semester. If you are an international student, you will need to apply for a French student visa. Obtaining a French student visa is a multi-step process, so it is important that you begin early and follow all instructions given to you by your program advisor.

Syracuse Strasbourg Center Programs

For all programs, students can choose to take a suggested flight offered by Advantage Travel, or you may make your own travel arrangements and meet the group upon arrival. Admitted students will receive a travel memo email detailing both options, as well as arrival information, including dates and locations.

 


Living in Strasbourg

Orientation

After arrival, you will have a mandatory on-site orientation in Strasbourg. During this orientation you will meet the Strasbourg staff, familiarize yourself with the Syracuse Strasbourg Center and the city of Strasbourg, and connect with other students on the program. You will also register for classes and receive your housing placement.

Housing

All students live with a French host family either within the city or in the immediate outskirts along a bus or tram line. This will allow you to practice the French you’ve learned in class and develop insights into French culture and daily life. Each student has a private room and access to WiFi. Breakfast is provided daily, and evening meals are provided Sunday through Thursday. You will need to budget additional funds to cover the rest of your meals. The Syracuse Strasbourg Housing Coordinator makes host family placements based on extensive experience with all the hosts, and information you provide on your housing form. We ask that you complete the housing form in a timely manner and take the time to respond to the questions. If anything changes about your situation (for example dietary needs), please contact your program advisor.

Note: students are responsible for their housing and meals during the week long mid-semester break, and will need to cover the costs from their personal funds.

Transportation

As part of your program fee, you will receive an unlimited bus/tram pass for the CTS. Buses and trams run frequently Monday to Saturday, starting early in the morning until 12:30 a.m.
On Sundays and holidays, trams and buses run on a more limited schedule, and for late-night travel there are special bus lines. You are responsible for any travel costs after public transportation ceases to run (e.g., taxi fare to return home after a late social activity). Students may choose to rent bicycles for the semester with Velhop; Strasbourg has the most extensive system of bike paths of any city in France.

Mail

Mail, including packages, should be sent to the Syracuse Strasbourg Center address below at the student’s attention and not to the host family’s address. Students will have a mailbox at the Syracuse Strasbourg Center, and the staff will notify students when they receive a package.

Student’s Name
Université de Syracuse
19 Quai Rouget de Lisle
67000 Strasbourg, France

Note: an import tax or customs duty is assigned to packages based on the declared value and often ranges from 50 to 100€, however, you shouldn’t have to pay the customs tax for used personal effects such as clothes. More information will be provided during orientation.

Cultural Adjustment

Living in a new culture can be both exciting and challenging, and when studying abroad it is common to go through a period of cultural adjustment. Understanding the process of adjustment and reaching out for support can help you cope with the transition. More information will be provided during orientation.


Technology

Computers and Personal Laptops

Computers and WiFi are available in the Syracuse Strasbourg Center during its regular hours:

  • Monday to Thursday: 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • Friday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

You must ensure that your laptop will work on a 220/240-volt, 50-cycle current. Since nearly all laptops work on a 100- to 240-volts, 50/60-cycle current, the only accessory that you will likely need is a plug adapter, which is available at most electronics stores.

Cell Phones

It is very important that students have a working cell phone while in Strasbourg and maintain continuous phone service while abroad. In most cases, students should plan to get a local, French SIM card.  Members of the Syracuse Strasbourg staff will accompany students to the phone store in Strasbourg during orientation.

Before you leave the U.S., you should verify that your phone is “unlocked” or buy a phone in France. Local  SIM cards cost approx. 10 €.  Plans start at 9€ per month and typically include calls, texting, and data.


Finances

Syracuse Strasbourg Program Cost

Banking and Cash

Do not bring a large amount of cash with you. If needed you can order Euros from your bank prior to departure (no more than 100 €) and then plan to withdraw Euros from an ATM when you arrive. You may need cash for smaller purchases (less than 10 €), so we suggest making regular ATM withdrawals and having access to cash during your semester abroad.

You will need an ATM card that allows you to withdraw cash internationally, as you cannot exchange currency in Strasbourg or open a French bank account when abroad for only one semester. International ATM and debit cards are widely accepted in France and throughout Europe. Check with your bank to be sure your ATM card can be used in foreign countries and to get information on your bank’s service fees for international ATM transactions.

Transferring Funds

If family members need to send money during the semester, they can deposit it in a bank account accessible through ATMs. In case of an emergency, money can also be wired via Western Union. For advice on transferring money overseas, check with your bank before you leave.

Credit Cards

Visa and MasterCard are widely accepted in Europe, while most businesses do not accept American Express or Discover Card. Chip cards are the standard in Europe and non-chip cards may not always work. Let your bank and credit card companies know you will be living abroad so they do not suspect fraudulent activity on your accounts. Make copies of both sides of your credit and ATM cards and keep them in a safe place, this way if a card is lost or stolen, you will still have access to important card information.


Academic Information

Enrollment Policies

All students are required to enroll on a full-time basis, with a minimum of 12 credits and a maximum of 19 credits. All students must register for a French language course or a course taught in French.

Note: courses dropped after the drop deadline still count in your total billing credits. Some courses may not be audited, including required French courses, courses offered at affiliated Strasbourg universities, and applied music and ensemble courses.

Registration

Course registration for all programs occurs in Strasbourg during the orientation period. All students should have preselected their classes based on information included in the scheduling planning packet in OrangeAbroad. In some cases, class offerings and schedules at local universities are not available until the start of the semester. Once abroad, students taking courses at the partner institutions will finalize their schedules by selecting courses from these local institutions, typically in combination with Center courses. Some class days and times are subject to change.

Textbooks

Students in the French classes must purchase their French textbooks at a local bookstore during the first week of class. All other classes will receive information about purchasing their textbooks during the first class meeting. Engineering students will receive information prior to departure.

Partner University Programs

Students enrolled at Université de Strasbourg (UdS, IIEF, and Sciences Po Strasbourg), the Conservatoire de Strasbourg, and the Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Strasbourg (INSA) should note that these institutions have classes Monday through Friday. The Conservatoire may hold rehearsals on Saturday. Students at these institutions may need to remain in Strasbourg longer than those students who are only taking classes at the Syracuse Strasbourg Center, based on the French institutions’ academic calendars. Your program fee will be adjusted to reflect any additional housing expense. Final grades for courses taken at a partner institution may not be received and posted to Syracuse University’s student records system until March for the fall semester and September for the spring semester.

Internships

Internships for credit (1-3 credits possible) are available in various organizations in the Strasbourg area. Openings vary according to the needs of the organizations and the students’ interests. In the past, students have worked in such areas as community service, teaching, business and media, and government. Most internships require an intermediate level of French, though in some cases English is sufficient. Requests for other placements can be explored with the Internship Coordinator at the Syracuse Strasbourg Center.

Excursions and Study Tours

Excursions are available to all students in the Syracuse Strasbourg program, to explore more of France and Germany during the semester. Select courses have study tours (one day or one weekend). You will receive the dates during orientation. For courses with study tours, you should not plan weekend travel until you have confirmed the study tour dates. Learn more about excursions and study tours.