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Sophomore Caroline Beck poses with her art entry, a handmade mug decorated with an image of the Mont-Saint-Michel.
This March, Duchesne Academy traveled to Plano High School to compete in the annual Texas French Symposium. The Duchesne team was led by Madame Elizabeth Hythecker, who has the unique perspective of having participated in the event as both a student and a coach. The Texas French Symposium is a non-profit organization that offers opportunities for French students to compete academically and artistically against their peers from across the state.
The Symposium is the largest French competition in the Southwest and consists of 34 schools from around Texas. Duchesne came in 6th place overall, and several students ranked high in their events.
Anne Marie Bollman, a junior at Duchesne, placed second overall out of 700 students. She said, “As much as I love preparing for my own part of the competition, I also love getting to see what other students have prepared. Much of the artwork is breathtaking, and it is fun to hear so many instrumental groups practicing in the common areas.”
Madame Hythecker credits the event with cultivating a love of French language and culture. “As a former competitor myself, I have always appreciated the opportunities that the Texas French Symposium offers to students who are passionate about the French and French culture. Students can compete in a number of disciplines (from poetry recitation to instrumental solos to grammar tests and many more), which means that a student can demonstrate her strengths where she feels most confident. The event is also a great opportunity for students to meet and interact with their peers from around the state!”
Bollman agrees that the Symposium is more than the competition – it’s about the experience.
“The Texas French Symposium is one of my favorite events of the whole year. I get to see so many other talented students who have chosen to study French and who love it, just like I do. It's one of the best opportunities I have to put my French into practice here in Texas! I'm so grateful to my teacher for giving us the opportunity to participate in the French Symposium. I can't wait to see what next year brings!”
Congratulations Duchesne for a great Symposium and good luck next year!