While at the University of Chicago, Vanessa first studied abroad in France and discovered the country’s rich history and cultural heritage. She returned a second time on a summer program with the Sorbonne and began a research project on France’s first historical museum and the emergence of contemporary notions of cultural heritage or patrimoine. She then went on to do a master’s and PhD in modern European History, writing a dissertation on the French branch of the 19th-century international peace movement in Europe and how it contributed to the beginnings of international civil society. She has taught for over 10 years in universities, including the American University of Paris and Sciences Po, and has also worked at UNESCO and as a museum educator. She is currently Head of Department and History-Geography Professor for a Cambridge program in a French high school. She speaks fluent French and basic German.
Ziad is the Elliott E. Burdette Professor at the American University of Paris. He teaches history, politics, and international relations and writes on Lebanese, Syrian, and Arab affairs, as well as on regional political transitions and crises. After graduating in economics from the American University of Beirut, he obtained a master’s degree in Arabic literature, then a Ph.D. in political science from Sciences Po Paris. He has been involved since 1994 in research work and reform campaigns related to political processes, and legal and civil society causes in Lebanon and other Arab countries. For the last 20 years, he has been regularly publishing articles and papers in Arabic (in Now Lebanon, Al-Quds al-Arabi, Al-Hayat, Aljazeera Center, the Journal of Palestine Studies, Daraj and Megaphone) and in French (in L'Orient Littéraire, Mediapart, Le Monde, L'Express, Libération and AOC). He is a board member in Lebanese and French cultural institutes, a consultant for many international organizations, and a lecturer in international festivals and annual conferences. His books include Syrie, la révolution orpheline, published in Arabic, French, and—in an updated version—in German, and Dans la tête de Bachar Al-Assad (with Subhi Hadidi and Farouk Mardam-Bey) in French.
At Columbia University, Sarah is pursuing a Ph.D. in sociology. For her master’s thesis, she researched permaculture in Costa Rica as a method of sustainable development and its relation to gross national happiness. Sarah has served in professional roles for Fulbright and the American Museum of Natural History. She has led adolescents and young adults throughout Central and South America; for Putney, she has led community service programs in Costa Rica, Peru, and Ecuador. Her passion for farm to table and food led her to the Natural Gourmet Institute, a health supportive cooking school where she received a chef diploma and subsequently cooked in several high-end kitchens. Last summer, Sarah taught Farm to Table seminars in Vermont for Putney. She enjoys swimming, surfing, yoga, hiking, and cycling. She is fluent in Spanish and proficient in French.
Ladane Du Boulay
Originally from Djibouti, Ladane is a multilingual professional educator with a DEI and technology background currently teaching French at Nightingale-Bamford in New York City. She is proficient at developing authentic personal relationships with various constituencies with a personal reputation for integrity, mentoring, empowerment, collaboration, performance excellence, and thoughtful leadership. Previously, Ladane worked at The Masters School in Dobbs Ferry, NY, where she taught all levels of French for ten years and developed and implemented new curriculum, including capstone projects, coached tennis, and advised the French Club in New York. Prior to that position, Ladane worked in IT/Telecommunications for Verizon Labs. She completed her BA in Human Resources at L' Institut Supérieur de Gestion in Tunis, Tunisia, her master’s in network management at L'institut National des Télécommunications in Paris, France, and her MEd at Pace University in New York.
Josh is a musician, filmmaker, and comedian from Short Hills, New Jersey. In 2020, he created the viral video series “Rhythms of Comedy,” in which he plays drums alongside popular clips from movies and TV shows. With over 2 billion views and nearly 7 million followers, Josh is now the most viewed drummer on the internet. Previously, he was a writer for NBC’s TODAY Show and an audience coordinator for Saturday Night Live. Josh graduated summa cum laude from Amherst College with a degree in French Literature. A Putney alumni himself, this will be his fifth summer working on Putney programs.
After finishing his undergraduate studies in film at La Sorbonne in Paris, Emile worked as an instructor in various high schools in Paris leading political science workshops for teenagers. While getting his master’s from the École Normale Supérieure, he also got the chance to study at the NYU Tisch School of the Arts. Looking for new adventures, he moved to the West Coast to join the Department of Literatures, Cultures and Languages at Stanford University as a lecturer of French and French Cinema. He has since lectured at several institutions to share his passion for French culture, including the New York DOE and cultural venues. Presently, he is an educational advisor for an educational company based in New York. Additionally, he works as an interpreter for French TV shows and film festivals. Emile speaks French and some German.
After finishing his undergrad in Buffalo, New York, Ean spent two years as a volunteer teacher at Xavier High School in Chuuk, Micronesia. While there, he taught world history, English writing, and health, along with politics-oriented electives for juniors and seniors. After deliberating staying for a third year abroad, Ean ultimately chose to pursue a master’s degree at Fordham University in New York. There, he continued to study development economics and remained interested in society, world cultures, and travel. He was offered a full-time position there as an International Student Advisor and continues to work and reside happily in the Bronx. Ean has led student programs in Oxford, Florence, Madrid, and Morocco.
During her undergraduate studies at Missouri State University, Andrea studied art history (including Egyptian art) in the South of France at Université Paul Valéry III and following graduation, she taught English to native French students in Paris. While working on her MFA at the San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI Master of Fine Arts Graduate Fellowship), Andrea completed an intern/externship with Aperture/Aperture West. She was also awarded the Exploratory Travel Grant to conduct art research in Tokyo and Kyoto, Japan, for MSU faculty. For the past seven years, she developed and has led MSU short-term art and culture programs in France and Japan. Last summer, Andrea completed an artist residency program in Iceland, exploring gender and equality in Reykjavik.
Isabelle graduated from the Sorbonne in Paris and defended her Ph.D. on Victorian literature at the University of Sorbonne Nouvelle, before getting her "Habilitation à diriger des recherches" (allowing her to supervise doctoral candidates) from the University of Poitiers, France. While working on British literature, she also went on with further training in art history, and wrote a short thesis on a prominent 19th century English art collector, George Salting. Ever since, she has worked on the British circles of art amateurs and collectors and on the European fascination for the Orient at the end of the 19th century—a subject on which she organized several international conferences, published many articles, co-edited two books, and recently wrote a monograph, published by Routledge. Thus art history has always been at the center of her academic work (and of her life, since her husband is a painter). Born and bred in Paris, although she also lived in London and Madrid and traveled extensively in Europe, she knows and loves the French capital and will be delighted to rediscover it with students. Isabelle is currently Professor of British Art and Literature at the University of Poitiers. She is fluent in English and Spanish, studied the bases of the Persian language and, as her friends once put it in a song, "knows (almost) everything about museums, including those that are closed!"