IIP Paris – Introduction

Hi all, my name is Russ Gibbons and I am a rising senior at the University of Pittsburgh majoring in Marketing, minoring in French, and pursuing a certificate in business analytics. Here at Pitt I am President of Pitt Racquetball Club and a member of a student marketing consulting group called Pitt Creative 360. I am also a Business Intern at Carmell Therapeutics, a biotechnology startup located in Pittsburgh’s South Side. In my free time I like to bike, cook, take photos and play disc golf. I also love exploring new places and meeting new people.

My overall career goal is to work internationally, which is the biggest reason why I chose to do the International Internship Program in Paris this summer. I wanted a study abroad experience that would not only be filled with excitement and adventure, but would also help me achieve this goal by giving me meaningful international work experience. I chose Paris for several reasons. To start, I have been studying French since I began high school about 7 years ago. I have worked hard to learn the language and I’ve found that my French classes are always some of my favorites to take. I recognize that it will be a huge challenge for me to rely on my French skills at work, at home, and during all other aspects of my summer in Paris. However, it is this challenge that will make this program so rewarding. I also think that Paris will be a beautiful place to live and I’m excited to be a part of the city for the summer.

As far as what I would like to get out of this program, there are a few things in particular. One of my main goals is to improve my French speaking and comprehension skills. There is only so far you can go in the classroom before you must take what you have learned to the real world, I am excited to do this. I’d also like to gain experience in marketing and international business, and gain an insight into how business is done in France and Europe. Finally, I’d like to develop personally by stepping outside of my comfort zone and forcing myself to be resourceful, independent, and courageous. I am very much looking forward to my time in Paris and I hope to tell you all more about it along the way!