Apply now to reserve your place in Quebec, Canada.
PROGRAM COST: $3,995 USD + inexpensive airfare. (Includes: Tuition – 3 credits, French lessons, interpreters, travel insurance, farewell dinner, accommodations and most meals in Université de Sherbrooke dorms, three nights in a Montréal hostel for orientation, transportation for reporting trips between Montréal and Sherbrooke and between Sherbrooke and Vermont, bike trip while reporting in Quebec’s Eastern Townships.)
GENERAL LOCATION: Sherbrooke and the surrounding French-speaking Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada.
FOCUS: Immersion in and multimedia journalism on the so-near yet so-different French Canadian culture of Quebec’s Eastern Townships.
COOPERATING UNIVERSITIES: University of Jamestown, University of Tennessee-Chattanooga, l’Université de Sherbrooke
CONTACT: Questions about the Quebec Project? Contact the Program Director Mike Dorsher (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The Quebec Project
New for 2018: ieiMedia’s first program in North America and an extraordinary opportunity to safely practice multimedia journalism while immersed in Quebec's culture and French language, with the help of interpreters and French lessons. Sherbrooke has a lower percentage of English speakers (5 percent) than Paris or Nice, yet you’ll enjoy Canada’s famous hospitality and safety, stunning scenery, mild weather, airfares less than one-third of those to Europe – and no jet lag!
In many ways, the Eastern Townships of Quebec are more French than France. Telling those stories in print, video, audio and social media will be a focus of our program, along with reporting on climate change and U.S.-Canadian relations. And if sports journalism is your passion, Sherbrooke offers many opportunities to report on baseball, bicycling, boating, soccer, football and yes, hockey – even in June.
For this program, we will fly into multilingual Montréal for three days of orientation and transitioning from English to French. There we’ll Tweet, Facebook and blog about Canada’s most cosmopolitan city, which features food, music and fun like none other in North America. We’ll take the Metro subway and rent bikes to traverse the city, from the Mount Royal overlook that gave the city its name to the continent’s most colorful Farmers Market to Vieux-Montréal, home to Canada’s Notre Dame and world headquarters of Cirque du Soleil, where you can catch a show any night of the week.
After three nights at Montreal Hostelling International, we’ll take a regional bus 90 miles east to Sherbrooke, a scenic city of 150,000 that is the heart of the Eastern Townships (i.e., counties or perishes) and the headquarters for our Quebec Project. Our host will be l’Université de Sherbrooke, which will provide our dorms, most meals, Wi-Fi classroom and tailored French lessons. Whether you’re an absolute beginner in French or nearly fluent, expert teachers from the university’s Centre de Langues will advance your abilities to hold conversations and understand French-Canadian culture. The Centre de Langues also will provide interpreters to aid in interviews on our afternoon and weekend reporting trips.
Besides reporting in and around Sherbrooke, we’ll spend a weekend bicycling and interviewing in the Eastern Townships, and we’ll drive down to the U.S. border and interview Vermonters about their neighbors to the north. Sherbrooke is little more than an hour from Vermont, but it’s a world away culturally and linguistically.
Students will blog throughout the course. In the final week, each student will produce one or two in-depth multimedia stories as the culmination of her or his reporting. Then we’ll use social media to publicize our stories and engage our audiences. Everyone will come away with great digital clips for their portfolio, a host of refined journalism and French skills, an appreciation of how distinct but interdependent Canadians and Americans are, a bunch of new friends from across North America – and an academic highlight. On June 28, we’ll all bus back to Montréal and say, “Au revoir,” but before heading home, students may choose to take an affordable train trip to Quebec City, Ottawa, Toronto or even down to Boston or New York. Que fantastique, n’est pas?
Students will earn three credits of upper-division journalism electives for this course. The credits will be issued by our partner campus in the center of North America, the University of Jamestown, and we will work with you so they are easily transferable to your university.
Students will stay in dorms at l’Université de Sherbrooke, preceded by three nights in a youth hostel in Montréal.
Students should bring their own laptop computers and digital or video cameras and recorders as well. The program will provide some equipment as needed.
French Instruction and Interpreters
All language instruction and interpreters will be furnished by l’Université de Sherbrooke’s Centre de Langues. There will be one daily language session weekdays, and each student will be assigned a specific number of hours to use interpreters in the field for program assignments only.
Michael Dorsher, Ph.D. (Quebec Program Director and ieiMedia Executive Director) is an emeritus professor of journalism at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, an adjunct journalism professor at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and a former Fulbright Scholar at McGill University in Montréal. Conversant in French and Spanish, Mike was ieiMedia’s program director in Nice, France, in 2014-16, and he previously led journalism students to Peru and England. He was an award-winning journalist for 20 years, capped by four years as a founding editor of washingtonpost.com.
John (Jack) Zibluk, Ph.D. (multimedia faculty) is a professor and head of the Communications Department at the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga. Jack was an ieiMedia Research Fellow in Istanbul, Turkey, in 2015, when he was a professor of mass media at Southeast Missouri State University.
Sharon S. Kessler, MPA (social media faculty) is a freelance writer in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area who was an editor at the Minneapolis-based Star Tribune for nearly 10 years and The Washington Post for nearly five years. For the past four years, she was an interactive media strategist for the nonprofit Saint Paul Foundation. She was a visiting journalist in ieiMedia’s Nice, France, programs in 2014 and 2015.
View complete faculty biographies on our Quebec Faculty Page.
The cost is $3,995 USD + inexpensive airfare, including tuition for three credits, French lessons, interpreters, travel insurance, farewell dinner, accommodations and most meals in Université de Sherbrooke dorms, three nights in a Montréal hostel for orientation, transportation for reporting trips among Montréal, Sherbrooke, Vermont and Quebec’s Eastern Townships. Graduates and students who do not need credit can deduct $450 from the program cost. Students who pay in full, by check, by Jan. 15 will receive a $150 “early-bird discount.”
Students studying abroad for the summer term have limited financial aid options. Check with your school’s financial aid office and your study abroad offices to find out if assistance is available. More information on financial aid is available here.
Apply now to reserve your place in the new Quebec Project. Or contact Program Director Mike Dorsher at: email@example.com, 715-222-7036. Students must fill out the online application and include contact information for two references (academic and/or professional) using the “Apply Now” link. A $50 application fee is required with the application but will be returned if a student is not accepted into the program. A $500 deposit is due 30 days after acceptance into the program, refundable only if the program is canceled. Application deadline: rolling admission until the program fills.