FlipSide Face- Catherine Dardenne

FlipSide Face- Catherine Dardenne

by Victoria JonesStaff Writer

Catherine Dardenne is the French teaching assistant at Simpson College but she’s not actually from France. Dardene is actually from the French speaking part of Belgium. She helps assist Professor Eve Goodhue and students with any questions or concerns they may have about French.

Along with assisting students in class, Dardenne leads the French Club which is open to anyone, even those not in a foreign language. Members mostly consist of French students or those interested in the French culture. She keeps it entertaining with a variety of activities and topics, but always keeps it focused on French culture.

Before Dardenne came to Simpson, she was a part of an exchange program where applicants were randomly sent to a college or university in the United States.

“Simpson picked me,” Dardenne said. “You get an offer and you can accept or decline but if you do decline it you don’t get another school. It was Simpson or nothing else.”

Dardenne is not the only TA here on campus and rooms with two other TA’s, Spanish TA Liliana Villalba and German TA, Simone Gaab.

“As a TA, she is super responsible and hard working,” Villalba said. “She really cares about her students and devotes a lot of time to preparing lessons and planning activities for the French Club and Pronunciation Workshop.”

Coming to Simpson, Dardenne enjoys the small campus because she can recognize faces and it’s easier to get to know student. She came from ULC in Belgium where there were around 20-25,000 students, which is a stark contrast from Simpson.

At the college, Dardenne enjoys the small groups and friendly students at Simpson and teaches a French Pronunciation Workshop. Motivated French students or music majors make up the six person class. Next semester she will be teaching a French Vocabulary Workshop.

Alhtough Dardenne has only been in the U.S. since June, she will have to return to Belgium this coming June due to her exchange program’s requirements.