Wanderlust Wendy

Life Brainstorming

After a long silence, Sciences Po Paris finally gave me an answer. They admitted me, and gave me a oodle of money from the Emile Boutmy Scholarship. The catch: they think my profile is better suited for the international affairs program in international political economy. Now the catch within the catch: this program is in French! I had to submit the Test de Connaissance Français (TCF – French Knowledge Test) result by May 4th. But the conditional offer allows entry in 2011 if I am unable to have the result by May 4th.
Oh boy! This was quite the curve ball and opened up a range of possibilities. I noticed that the Intl Affairs program also has a dual degree option with LSE. Excited by the range of options, I emailed them back immediately to see if LSE is part of the deal, and whether that oodle of money comes with me if I defer. My French isn’t good enough to begin a graduate program this fall, but the idea of taking a year to polish the language was appealing.

While waiting for an answer to my questions, I obsessively began searching all the options for this potential gap year: French classes at La Sorbonne in Paris, or at the university in Poitiers, or Geneva, Montréal or any other French-speaking country/cities. My mind was completely ADD with all sorts of possibilities. In the midst of all these research over the span of 3 days, I realized something:

I love searching alternative ways to live life.

I’ve found myself at various points of my life spending hours upon hours on the Internet, googling every different option for all kinds of things: grad school, career, travel ideas, etc. Sometimes I feel like a crazy person with the way my mind goes from one wild idea to the next. Other times, I feel the searching process is a huge waste of time because they often don’t amount to anything. But I adore the possibilities and the process of picturing myself in various situations.

After 3 days of obsessive searches and discussions with friends about various options, I received my answer from Sciences Po today. Unfortunately, to defer would mean that I would have to reapply for the scholarship next year, and also reapply to be considered for the LSE dual degree. Aaaand… that is way too much work, so we are back to the original decision of attending LSE for MPA.

BUT, this search led me to read an important fine print at the Sciences Po MPA website that states the program is not eligible for the Emile Boutmy scholarship, which now makes me reconsider spending the 2nd year there. Instead, the idea of going to Singapore for the 2nd year is settling in! In the end, the search was not all for nothing and if I ever decide to take a year to go frolic around France and perfect my French, I know where I’d go!

I am slightly disappointed that France does not hold a definite place in my life in the near future as of now. But, I see it like a relationship with a person – if it’s meant to be, it’ll happen. Ahh… it is nice to be young. I think of these obsessive searches as a brainstorming exercise. One of the many crazy ideas eventually takes shape. One must dare to dream, right?

8 thoughts on “Life Brainstorming”

  1. congrats on your acceptances and scholarship offer. after doing a search for 'sciences po emile boutmy' i found your blog. i applied to the sciences po Int'l Affairs masters along with the scholarship. I have yet to hear back about either though.

    hopefully you've figured out what you're doing and best of luck with whatever you choose!

  2. Hi,

    I applied for the same Scholarship for the 2010 intake of one of their masters programmes. I am still waiting for their answer. I see you got the result of your application earlier. I applied for the same and it closed on March 15 2010. Although I speak fluent French, I applied for an English programme for the same reason; the exam for DALF will not be available until November this year. I am wondering why you already have your result and I still don't have mine, so far this is what I got from them: Statut de la candidature Etude master

    Votre candidature est admissible et votre dossier a été transmis au jury d'admission.

    Vous serez informé(e) de la décision prise dans les meilleurs délais.

  3. Wow, pretty cool options. My former landlord's daugher, Vietnamese girl, just completed her BS and MA at the LSE. What a great school with many opportunities. I am debating on whether to do a PhD in the US, UK or in Singapore.

    If you make it to Singapore, let me know. I am just a short hop in Saigon.

    Best of luck.

  4. Hey, found your blog while searching for acceptance of the Emile Boutmy scholarship. I'm applying for it, and I'm not sure when they'll get back to my questions so I thought I'd ask someone who already knew about it. Did you have to be accepted into Sciences Po first to apply for the scholarship? That's what the site says and it confuses me, since we have to make our payments before submitting our application. I thought you would be accepted into the scholarship first, then you apply for the school…. so as you can see, I'm lost and I'd appreciate it if you could give me an answer on this. Nice blog btw (:

    • Hi Jen!Thanks for reading my blog! If I remember correctly, I applied to the scholarship and the school simultaneously. I think there was a section in your application to the school that pertained to the scholarship. But, my understanding is that you can also apply to the scholarship later after you have received acceptance. Either way, I believe you have to apply to the school first. Best of luck!

  5. wow! what a nice blog…am usually not into them but this one i must say hit the bar…. I see myself doing exactly the same thing spending countless of hours on the net trying to figure options left and right and of course it's a huge waste of time but i enjoy it as you mentioned…. I found it very interesting that i am exactly in your shoes this year… applied to 3 US schools just as a back up plan with my first choice being Sciences Po LSE international Affairs…It was nice reading that i have the same experiences as someone i could never cross path with…thk God for the internet….

    • Thanks for your comment, Sadie! Good luck with your applications – waiting is the hardest part. I'm glad you enjoy my writing; good to know that it's beneficial for someone!

  6. i am applying for sciences po this year and have got a conditional offeri am wondering did they process your scholarship application with a conditional offer ?
    thank you very much
    Merry X’mas


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