Giving French a Hundred Percent!

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Maitreyi Pillai – a precocious 17-year old student of Alliance Française de Bombay – recently did the institution proud by securing a 100% in her French paper for the HSC exams. An interview with her is reproduced below:

Bonjour! Could you please tell us a bit about yourself?

I am Maitreyi Pillai and I am 17 years old. I pursued my initial education at my birthplace in Oman. Later in India, I  had  French as a second language in my school and since then it has been my passion. In fact, I have secured good ranks twice in the International French Olympiad during my high school. Apart from being a lover of the belle langue, I am also a dancer and have trained as a classical singer since childhood. I like reading books, meeting new people, travelling, learning new languages, and am a complete cinephile.

Maitreyi Pillai

Maitreyi Pillai

Why did you choose to study French at school and college?

My school  fortunately offered me the choice of French as a second language. In due course of time, I met an angel in the form or my mentor who encouraged me to pursue the language more seriously. It is thanks to her that French has become an enduring passion for me. Later in college, I was again lucky to have French as a subject. It would be safe to say that the language has changed the direction of  my life.

Having already studied the language academically, are there any particular reasons that you choose to take up French at AF Bombay?

Being an ardent lover of the language during my academic education, I was advised by my mentor to join AF Bombay to improve my skills. She herself is a former student of AF Bombay.


How was your overall experience at AF Bombay?

I feel  overwhelmingly blessed to be a student at this institution. AF Bombay has not only taught me French as a language but also introduced me to French culture. It has enriched my knowledge and skills and helped to hone my personality. AF Bombay has given me an added edge when it comes to French which enabled me to score a 100% in my HSC exam for the language. I feel profoundly grateful to AF Bombay. And  of course,  I have been  showered with unconditional love by the amazing faculty at the institute!

What advice would you give to other students who want to learn French?

I feel like I’m too young to be offering anyone advice. However, I will say that I will never regret having learnt the language. French in itself is like a song which the heart never ceases to listen. For me, the only rule for a student learning a language is “Not to learn a language, but to live it”. As Charlemagne put it, “Avoir une autre langue, c’est posséder une deuxième âme” [to know another language is to possess a second soul].

How do you plan to use this language in the future?

Well , in my case French language is the only plan. Though I haven’t decided on what career to pursue, I look forward to doing something related to this language.

Siddharth Bhatt

Rédaction, AF Magazine Inde-Népal

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Directeur de publication : Délégation Générale de la Fondation Alliance Française en Inde et au Népal

Rédacteur en chef : Laurent Elisio Bordier

Rédacteur/Coordinateur national : Siddharth Bhatt

Rédacteurs, contributeurs : Guillaume, Abhirami, Alexandre, Chintan, Cléa, David, Eleonore, Elie, Kanika, Karine, Nita, Thomas, Malvika, Marie-Joëlle, Meera, Mayuri, Mitushi, Alice, Prutha, Romain, Ritika, Manas, Supriya ...