As an undergraduate student concentrating in classics, Davis Tantillo thought French was something he would study “on the side.” But this year, as Brown in Paris celebrates its 30th year as a program, Tantillo marks more than four years of study and teaching in the country.
“I started in French 100 as a freshman and just really liked the French department at Brown. I always felt very supported,” said Tantillo, who earned a bachelor’s from Brown in 2019. “I kept taking French language classes, and then I ended up wanting to go abroad to France. It wasn't really my plan, but it just fell into place.”
After graduation, Tantillo moved to Paris and started teaching English in suburban elementary schools through the Teaching Assistant Program in France (TAPIF). In his second year of teaching, he realized there was more he wanted to explore in his own education.
“I was reading books in French and having conversations with my friends and colleagues at work that were bringing up more questions than answers. Studying French and comparative literature was a good way to fulfill multiple desires, which were to stay in France and also to nurture this growing academic interest,” he said.