French Senior Profiles 2021

Every spring, during the last week of class, the Department of World Languages and Cultures honors its graduating French seniors at our awards ceremony.  This spring, we are sadly unable to gather in person, but we still wish to recognize our seniors and all of their accomplishments of these past four years. Congratulations to our graduating seniors!

Amanda Burke has majors in Geography and French, and studied in Nantes in spring 2020. While at Valpo, she has been an avid and enthusiastic attendee of Cercle français events and is a member of the Geography Club as well.  She was inducted into Pi Delta Phi and is also a member of the Geography honorary, Gamma Theta Upsilon, serving as the Valpo chapter president.  She has also worked as a Resident Assistant at Valpo.

After graduation, she will complete a two-month summer internship with the Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program at the University of Michigan where she will be working with the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History developing programs to help BIPOC high schoolers navigate the environmental and geo-science spaces at university. This fall she will teach English in Grenoble through the TAPIF program.

Bethany Buss is majoring in International Relations and French, and was a resident of the Maison française as a sophomore.  On campus, she has also been active in the Valpo Student Organizing Committee as well as a variety of volunteer programs. She spent her junior year off campus, spending the fall 2019 semester as part of the Lutheran College Washington Semester, where she interned on Capitol Hill with a non-profit organization. She studied in Paris in the spring semester through the Boston University internship program and was able to start her internship experience working with French immigrants before the hurried return to the States in March 2020.

After graduation, Bethany will be working in Washington, D.C., with the nonprofit Lutheran Services in America, and then plans to return to Indiana to pursue a Master’s in Public Affairs at Indiana University Bloomington starting in fall 2022.

Miranda Engholm is majoring in French and Global Service with a minor in TESOL.  She is a Christ College Scholar and was inducted into Pi Delta Phi as well as receiving the French section Prix d’excellence.  She studied in Nantes in spring 2020 and has been the French Language Partner for the 2020-21 academic year. She has volunteered with the Compass International Family Center as a tutor, and has been involved with APO (Alpha Phi Omega), the service fraternity on campus. She has been selected for Phi Beta Kappa and will be inducted later this month. She has also received the Calling and Character Student Prize through the Institute for Leadership and Service.

This summer, she will complete an internship with “Water to Thrive” in Austin, Texas, and in the fall she will move to Lyon to teach English with the TAPIF program.

Bianca Gamez graduates with majors in French and Political Science. She studied in Paris with the Boston University internship program, completing her internship in Fall 2019 at a French law firm, Cabinet Castellane. She has received the French Prix d’excellence and is a member of several honor societies, including Pi Delta Phi, the Political Science honorary, and the Order of Omega, and has been selected for Phi Beta Kappa. On campus she has served as Orientation Assistant and Peer Mentor for PSP, in addition to being a member of the Campus Judicial Board and the Morale Team for DM.

After graduation, she plans to take the LSAT and apply to law school.

Eric Webster graduates with majors in Digital Media and French. He gained broadcast experience while at Valpo working on the ESPN crew that broadcasts all of Valpo’s sports. He studied in Nantes during the spring 2020 semester—and found himself returning early to the States along with the other Valpo students in France.

After graduation, he will return to Saint Louis to work at GenieCast as a corporate livestreaming producer.