The Indiana Honors Program in Foreign Languages (IUHPFL) is an opportunity to travel to other foreign countries to experience, first hand, the culture and language. Although the program offers trips to Austria, Chile, and China, the two most popular sites for Center Grove students are Spain and France.
Megan Miller spent six and a half weeks in France while on a trip apart of the IUHPFL.
“It was really hard living in a different country because I was around complete strangers in a whole new culture but it was also challenging in a good way,” Miller said.
“I got to push myself to a new level on my language learning and adaptation.”
The cost for an IUHPFL trip can be anywhere between $3,800 and $4,650. The program can be considered expensive, but financial aid is an option to those students who pass the admission tests. To some students though, the price for completely immersing yourself into a new world to learn a foreign language is incalculable.
“The program was definitely expensive, but I’d say it’s worth it for the experience of living away from your parents and in a new country; you are learning a new language and getting an edge when you apply for college and jobs later on,” Miller said.
The Three Pillars system is how the IUHPFL is able to give such a special experience to the students. These are fundamental aspects of every trip taken. This foundation is built with the Honor Code, a seven part commandment keeping students out of trouble and to keep them learning. Academic instruction, classes the participants partake in while at the site, and the Host Family, which is the student’s home for the entirety of the trip, are large contributors to the Three Pillar system.
“I feel like all Three Pillars were important to the program because the academic instruction aided our language immersion and the host family experience aided our academic instruction,” Miller said. “We would get questions from class to ask our host families and they would be about French idioms. We could learn a few and use them so the Three Pillars were all interconnected.”.
The benefits of the IUHPFL program are beyond the regular classroom expectations of learning a new language.
“I do feel like I understand the French language better because I was immersed in it and because of the classes I took there,” Miller said. “It helped explain the finer details that you typically don’t notice when you’re carrying on a conversation.”
The IUHPFL is a unique way for students to learn the foreign language of their choice in depth and to experience a culture they had been studying from afar for years.