Susanne Spahn ’11

Global Communications Major & International Economics Minor

My education at AUP had a profound impact on me. From the moment that I arrived as an 18 year-old, bright-eyed incoming student, through the time I graduated in 2011, I not only gained invaluable knowledge in the classroom, but learned more about the world, about friendships, different career paths, cultures, languages and most strikingly, about myself and who I truly am. I applied to AUP because it offered me the possibility of continuing my education and obtaining a US-accredited degree, while living in one of Europe’s most beautiful, vibrant and culturally diverse cities. Prior to coming to AUP, I had lived in the United States for three years. I attended an “All-American” high school in New York City, and as a dual citizen (German-American) who grew up in Germany and Switzerland, I missed the European lifestyle a lot.

I decided to minor in economics because I wanted to better understand how policies and the economy influence each other.

Susanne Spahn '11

My experience at AUP was passionate, accepting and welcoming. I can confidently say that AUP set the foundation and gave me the knowledge that I needed to practice new values in my personal and professional life. By sheer example, my professors at AUP taught me to be passionate about the field I would choose to pursue after graduation. They taught me real-life applications of the subjects I studied and enthusiastically acted as mentor figures; even outside the classroom. My classmates represented many different walks of life, opinions and ways of doing things. That exposure led me to be a more accepting and tolerant person. The welcoming nature of AUP starts on day one. You are made to feel embraced by a big, international family. The orientation and student mentoring programs were an integral part of my AUP experience and were essential in my acclimation to France, the institution and the community I remain closely attached to today.

I decided to minor in economics because I wanted to better understand how policies and the economy influence each other. I was also curious about understanding development issues, taxes, trade, interest rates and how they affect our daily lives. These are all very interesting and crucial topics which follow us our whole lives and have followed me in my career. Having a minor in economics demonstrates to employers that you can see the world not just in an abstract way but also in a concrete and systematic way. The economics courses that I took at AUP were challenging and rewarding. They taught me problem solving techniques that have remained relevant today as I advance in my career.

What made this university so special for me, is the fact that AUP really cares! Everyone from the Admissions Department to Student Affairs, staff, professors, housing managers and administration officers provide personalized guidance to the student to show that they are not just a number. If more organizations and businesses operated this way, the world would be a better place! Would I recommend AUP as a place of study? Absolutely, because it combines the best of all worlds. The academic, cultural and global vision that AUP has, is truly unique and will shape you, touch you and change you in a way no other university ever could.