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International Office
Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3
45.748149, 4.860552999999982
Topic Getting used to French administration

The university of Lyon 3 is very proud of their status as one of the #1 universities in France for international students. They welcome a very large number of internationals every semester and offer many events for their leisure time in the city. Even though, they put much effort into entertaining all the students, official administration, according to my experience, is unfortunately not very well organized. Of course, it also depends on the department one studies in (for me it's the business school called "IAE Lyon"), but the general opinion one hears from different international students is that one has to wait very long for e--mails to be responded to (if one receives a response at all) and for schedules to be finally released. One of the main problems is that administrative staff doesn't work during the summer break, but only return their offices when classes start again which means that the first three to four weeks of the semester are very chaotic because everyone arrives at the same time and things could not be organized beforehand. For me personally this meant that I only received my schedule two weeks after classes had already started. To not miss the first two sessions of my classes I tried to research the professors in charge, go to their offices and ask for the rooms the classes would take place in so that I could attend in case I would be accepted to the class later (at Lyon 3, one can only find out the room a class will take place in if the class is officially registered in the students' online portal). Unfortunately, they were not very appreciative of me trying to sort things out by myself. Now that I finally have my schedule, I am more or less happy with my classes but it would have helped me a lot if the international office had released a message to all international students apologizing for the delay and telling people to stay calm and that it will all work out in the end. Instead, many of us had the feeling that we had done something wrong because our classes just wouldn't show up online.

So my advice to all future Lyon 3 students: Prepare yourself to wait! Things will work out in the end, but probably not as they were announced before and not in time. To stay on good terms, with the administrative staff, it might be a good idea to be patient and not go back to people's offices or send e-mails several times.

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