Ecole des Ponts ParisTech was awarded the "Bienvenue en France" ("Choose France Certification") label by Campus France, with a maximum score of three stars.
Launched in 2019 by Campus France, the "Bienvenue en France" label is intended for French institutions wishing to promote their offers designed to welcome international students. This campaign also responds to the need to improve and standardize the conditions for welcoming international students on all French higher education campuses, while giving them a guarantee of quality recognized and certified by the French government.
The certification describes concrete measures and actions that directly affect the daily life of international students in France and will help them to manage their arrival and administrative procedures. Evaluation is carried out using twenty indicators divided into five main themes: quality and accessibility of information, quality and accessibility of reception facilities, accessibility and support for teaching, housing and quality of campus life, and quality of post-graduate follow-up.
The three-star rating obtained by Ecole des Ponts Paristech means that the institution meets all the designated indicators. The "Bienvenue en France" label is awarded for 4 years by the Campus France agency and validated by an independent commission. Campus France is a public institution in charge of promoting French higher education abroad and welcoming foreign students and researchers to France.
This label rewards, among other things, a set of concrete actions developed at Ecole des Ponts ParisTech to welcome international students:
- welcome days: several days of academic re-entry with presentations on the School, its organisation, the campus, the administrative procedures to be completed and practical life; carrying out level assessments in French and English; welcoming in the academic departments and definition of the learning agreement.
- "Feel Français" partnership: with this partner, Ecole des Ponts ParisTech offers support to international students in administrative procedures (visa, home and civil liability insurance, opening a bank account, telephone, transport card).
- paperless applications: for many programs (especially those within the framework of academic exchange or double degree agreements), applications are made entirely online.
- accessibility in English: the Ecole des Ponts ParisTech website is fully available in English, and at the start of the 2020/21 academic year, two programmes entirely in English will be offered to students of Ecole des Ponts ParisTech's partner institutions (applied maths semester, green and sustainable finance).
- Linguistic and scientific upgrading: considering the specificity of French-style engineering education, in particular its demanding content in mathematics and physics, international students admitted to the "diplôme d'ingénieur" follow, on the recommendation of the admission jury, a five-day seminar held before the start of the classes.
- buddy and alumni mentoring: a mentoring programme, set up by Ponts Alumni (association of alumni of the École des Ponts ParisTech), allows each international student admitted to the "diplôme d'ingénieur" as part of a double-degree programme, to be accompanied by a mentor (a graduate of the École) whom he or she can ask to help him or her integrate into France and to assist him or her with academic and professional matters.
- Career workshops for international students: the Career Guidance Department of Ecole des Ponts ParisTech sets up various activities designed to support the professional integration of students. In this context, international students benefit from personalised follow-up and coaching: specific workshops are offered to them on how to find a job/internship, write CVs and cover letters in French, on the French job market, how to conduct a job interview, etc.
- participation in student life: the "international" section of the school's student association (the "BDE"), represented by an international student, supports international students by organizing the "My Pair" programme. International students in engineering training are invited to the "integration weekend", and 2/3 of the living expenses are covered by the Ecole des Ponts. In addition, cultural evenings are organised during which students are invited to present their country of origin.