Talking Foundation with Freshman Ariel Ronayne

Ariel Ronayne image

PCA sits down with freshman Ariel Ronayne to discuss the Foundation program, life in Paris, and selecting a major.

Where are you from and where did you grow up?

A small country town in the suburbs of Maryland. Lots of white picket fences and minivans.

What made you interested in studying art in higher education in Paris?

After hearing back from all the colleges I applied to, studying art in Paris was an opportunity I just couldn’t pass up.

What major have you chosen to go into?

Communication Design.

Has it changed from what you had envisioned before starting the foundation year?

Even before coming to PCA I knew I was leaning heavily towards digital media, but I’m glad foundation year encourages exploration in many different paths. I didn’t feel locked into a major too early or not allowed to change my mind.

f t p

Categories

Life in Paris and Students.

Departments

Foundation.

Are there any classes or assignments that helped you make your decision?
Intro to Digital Media was one of my favorite classes and confirmed my choice. I was lucky enough to have a good teacher and assignments that pushed me out of my comfort zone. The card project will forever live in infamy for my peers and I, but it taught us a lot and now we’ll always respect printers.

What inspires you about Paris?
The appreciation of beauty, even in the smallest of things.

On a normal weekday, what is your life like as a PCA student?
The first half of my week is all school, homework, and trying not to fall asleep on the metro ride home (it happened once). But things get better towards the weekend, and I always make time to explore Paris and hang out with friends.

Do you mingle with peers in different departments?
Bien sûr! One of the things I love about going to school at PCA is meeting all sorts of people who are all passionate about art. I’ve made good friends from all different departments and places, from Seoul to San Francisco.

What was the biggest challenge you faced and overcame? Not only related to academia but life in Paris as well?
My first semester here taught me that it’s essential to protect the time you set aside for yourself. It can be very easy to end up with a packed schedule and then not have time to actually do most of it. Learning to set boundaries for yourself and stick to a plan becomes vital as your responsibilities grow.

Have you ever been homesick? If so, how did you overcome this?
Sometimes, usually while filling out French paperwork. It helped to remember that in just a few months this foreign city wouldn’t feel so foreign. It’s been almost 6 months now and Paris is really starting to feel like home.

Do you mingle with Parisians?
Here and there. My french has come a long way but I still get shy. My most memorable encounters have been when I least expect it.

Where is your favorite place to grab lunch around the PCA campus?
Cojean: Best. Raspberry. Yogurt. Ever.

Where is your favorite hang out in Paris?
Whatever thrift store I’ve recently discovered.

IG: @arielkarenna