« "Receiving this scholarship has given me back my confidence," says Cécile Bretonnet, laureate of the Passport for the Master's scholarship program from the Sorbonne University Foundation, financed with Safran's support."


Cécile Bretonnet
Cécile Bretonnet © Sorbonne University - Pierre Kitmacher

This first-year student in PCGI (Physics - Chemistry - Geosciences - Engineering) still can’t believe she got the scholarship. For the next five years - throughout her bachelor’s and master’s degree programs—she will benefit from both scholarship funding and mentoring with an engineer from the Safran Group.

Both curious and demanding, Cécile had many ideas for possible studies in higher education. She chose Sorbonne University because this institution "had the advantage of offering first-year portals with a range of disciplines rather than a single specialty," she says.

While she’s passionate about art, she chose to study science because of her love of mathematics and physics. In high school, she got to spend an immersion week with her mathematics club at the University of Caen where she discovered the Great National Heavy-Ion Accelerator (Ganil). This experience confirmed her interest in the hard sciences. With the PCGI portal, she will discover the joys of chemistry. She likes to use her hands, experiment and she hopes to continue next year through an intensive bachelor's degree in physics and chemistry.

Her mentor at Safran shares her appetite for science. From their first meeting, Cécile knew that she was going to be able to build a real human relationship.

"We share many interests. Like me, she is interested in science, humanities and languages, "she says.

Cécile is a bit reserved, but there was a spontaneous connection with her mentor. "She received a degree in mechanics at the Faculty of Science and Engineering at Sorbonne University, which she remembers very well. She advises me and reassures me about my choices using her experience and knowledge of the job market and the different paths available to me," explains the student. More than just a support, this mentoring is a real human experience.

And this discreet and determined student has already developed a taste for these experiences. In the first semester, she chose to take a disability awareness course. Understanding how to help people, how to respond to their disability and educate other citizens about this issue seemed obvious to her. In the coming months, she plans to become involved in the AFEV, a network of solidarity students working in working-class neighborhoods. And then, there are the languages and the desire to travel to discover new cultures: after having learned English, German, Korean, and some bases of Japanese, Cécile has just started introductory courses in Chinese and intends to then take on Russian.

"Sorbonne University also allows us to diversify our skills through transdisciplinary teaching or associations of all types," says the Cécile.

If she has limited her activities to adapt to the pace of the university, she plans to continue making use of all these possibilities. Thanks to this Passport to a Master's scholarship from the Sorbonne University Foundation, she will be able to pursue her studies in optimal conditions and focus on her future.

Even if she is already considering a career in research, she can take her time to choose. "There are many possibilities and I will evaluate the opportunities as I clarify my direction and my career plan," she concludes.

Updated on 16 APR 2019