Mary Ann Letellier
M.A., French Literature, New York University (1985)
B.A., French Literature, Drew University (1983)
With over twenty years of experience in international education, Mary Ann has been a part of the CUPA team since 1999. As Program Director, she is dedicated to upholding the highest academic standards and encourages students to seek out rich intellectual experiences during their time in Paris. Mary Ann is the liaison between CUPA and home universities. In this capacity she communicates regularly with Study Abroad offices and academic departments to ensure that a student’s academic requirements are met. Thanks to her background in both American and French academia, Mary Ann has a unique understanding of the challenges American students might face in adapting to the French system and above all how to help them thrive.
D.E.A., Littérature anglaise contemporaine, Université Paris-Sorbonne (2002)
Cécile has long been fascinated with questions of interculturality, specifically as they relate to French and American academia. She first started working at CUPA in 1999 while completing a degree in translation. The knowledge of how different cultures express themselves has been paramount in her ability to help students navigate the intricacies of the French university system. Although her role at CUPA spans many aspects of a student’s life abroad, her main focus is to advise students academically and to serve as a liaison between French university faculty and CUPA.
Assistant Director for Outreach and Admissions
As the sole U.S.-based member of the team, Tary is the primary liaison for students, parents, and study abroad offices for the CUPA program. Having lived and worked in France for several years during her early adulthood, she now considers the Hexagone to be her second home. Because of this, she is eager to share her love for France and francophone culture with students of all backgrounds. Her various responsibilities include recruitment at U.S. colleges and universities and working and advising students from the very first query to the moment they step on the plane for Paris.
Coordinator for Communications and Student Life
B.A., French and Art History, Amherst College (2004)
Enamored with Paris since she first traveled to France in 1998, Silvia returned to the French capital in the fall of 2002 to attend CUPA and again in 2004 thanks to an Amherst College Fellowship. As Student Life Coordinator, she is passionate about sharing the endless cultural and social opportunities the city has to offer. Throughout the semester, she works closely with CUPA’s French Language team to publish a weekly cultural and linguistic newsletter, l’inCUPArable. She also organizes a variety of student life activities that include trips, picnics, soirées, and visits designed to encourage students to better acquaint themselves with French culture and with each other.
Housing and Program Assistant
Esther was introduced to interculturality at a young age having been raised in France by American parents who also had ties to Mexico. She quickly developed a love for traveling and getting better acquainted with her family’s cultures. She has also always loved discovering new cultures.
She studied biblical theology in the U.S. for three years before returning to France to work on staff in a school which also provided theological training. She is currently working on completing a degree in sociology at the Rennes II University. At CUPA, her primary focus is to provide students with a pleasant housing situation which will enrich their immersion experience.
French Language Coordinator
Maîtrise de L.L.C.E Anglais, Université de Paris X-Nanterre (2000)
Having grown up in a Franco-Malagasy family, Michaëlle Rafaralahy is passionate about interculturality. Since an early age, she has traveled extensively–including summers spent in New York City studying acting–to experience and learn about different cultures. After graduating from the Université de Paris X – Nanterre with a degree in English literature and civilization, Michaëlle decided to combine her love for French culture and language with her passion for intercultural learning by pursuing a Masters in the Didactics of language and culture at the Sorbonne Nouvelle, which she completed in 2005. She has been teaching French as a foreign language for over a decade at various universities and companies such as Microsoft, AUP, EICAR, and the École Nationale Supérieure du Pétrole et des Moteurs. As CUPA’s French Language Coordinator, Michaëlle provides students with the tools to perfect their French language skills and take full advantage of their semester from a linguistic perspective.
Professor of Art History
Diplôme d'Etudes Supérieures en Développement International, Institut of International Development, University of Ottowa (1983)
B.A. in Visual Arts, University of Ottowa (1982)
Originally from Canada where he studied Fine Arts at the University of Ottawa, Nicolas moved to Paris in 1986 after receiving a fellowship from the Ministère Français des Affaires étrangères to pursue a Maîtrise in Esthetics at the Université de Paris 1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne. In addition to being a professor of Art History, Nicolas is also an artist who exhibits his paintings in France and Canada. Following the advent of the Internet, Photoshop, social media, etc. he turned his attention to the digital image and is dedicated to exploring the artistic potential of this nascent field of esthetics. He is in search of a new visual language that exists somewhere between the virtual and the real.
At CUPA, Nicolas Baudouin teaches Major Movements in 19th Century French Painting during the regular academic year, as well as during the Summer Program.
Professor of History and Methodology
Christelle Taraud is a historian specializing in contemporary Maghreb, with a focus on gender and sexuality issues within the colonial context. She is a member of the Centre d’histoire du XIXe siècle, an inter-university research center based at the Université de Paris-Sorbonne and the Université de Paris-1.
At CUPA Christelle teaches French Methodology (Orientation), Diversity in Paris: From Communities to Communitarianism? (fall semester and summer program), and “Arabs,” Islam and Political Life in France (1962 – 2017) (spring semester). Throughout the semester she maintains office hours to meet with students individually about any question related to methodology they might have.
Professor of French
Maîtrise de Français Langue Etrangère, l'Université de Paris 3 - Sorbonne Nouvelle (1997)
Licence de Lettres Modernes, mention Français Langue Etrangère, l'Université Paris Nanterre (1995)
Laetitia Boisdron was born in Holland, spent her childhood in Brazil, and completed high school in the United States. After majoring in French literature as an undergraduate, she received her graduate degree (D.E.A.) at the Sorbonne in the didactics of language and culture. For more than fifteen years, she has taught French, literature, and methodology for international students at Sciences-Po, ESCP, ESCE, and American university programs in Paris (CUPA, Northwestern University, St. John’s University, Delaware University). For three years, she was the coordinator for cultural activities for the NUSP program (Northwestern University and Sciences-Po). She was also an instructor for French teachers for short summer sessions in France, Finland, and Azerbaidjan. She is currently the adjunct director for all UPF programs, specifically in charge of student life and the supervision of independent studies.