École normale supérieure de Cachan
|Postgraduates||Masters, agrégation, Ph.D|
|Location||Cachan, near Paris, France|
|Nickname||ENS Cachan, Normale Sup' Cachan|
|Affiliations||UniverSud Paris, Conférence des Grandes Ecoles, ASTech|
The École normale supérieure de Cachan (ENS Cachan, Normale Sup' Cachan) is one of the most prestigious French Grandes Écoles. Like all the other Grandes écoles, this higher education institution is not included in the mainstream framework of the French public universities. It belongs to the Ecoles normales supérieures network, along with the Ecole normale supérieure (rue d'Ulm) and the Ecole normale supérieure de Lyon.
Its main mission is to train world-class academics, but it is also a starting point for public administrative or private executive careers. It recruits mostly from the very competitive "classes préparatoires" (see also Grande École). Students of the ENS Cachan who passed the entrance exam are civil servants and are known as "normaliens". Normaliens are paid a monthly salary (around 1300 €) by the French government for their studies and have to work for a French public administration for six years when their four-years curriculum at the ENS is completed. ENS Cachan also recruits some students from the university; the latter are not required to work for a French public administration but are not paid either.
Students of the ENS Cachan follow the standard university curriculum (Licence, Master, and most of the time PhD). They are encouraged-though it is not mandatory- to take then the Agrégation competitive examination.
There are 17 departments : Mathematics, Computer Science, Fundamental Physics, Chemistry, Biology for the scientific department, Electronics, Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering for the engineering departments, Economics and Management, Social Sciences, Languages, Design.
ENS Cachan cooperates with many foreign universities, for example in student exchange programs. One of them is MONABIPHOT developed in cooperation with Wrocław University of Technology in Poland, Complutense or Carlos III University of Madrid in Spain, MIT, Oxford, Humboldt.
The admission to the ENS Cachan as normalien is made through a highly competitive entrance examination, and requires at least two years of preparation after high school in Classes Préparatoires (Scientific (MPSI, PCSI...), Literary (B/L) and Business sections (Economics and Management)). The ENS Cachan recruits every year 360 normaliens and 800 degree seeking students.
Though normaliens follow the standard university curriculum, they have the opportunity to pursue their studies in other Grandes Ecoles such as Sciences Po and the ENSAE without having to take an entrance exam (or only a part of it). Normaliens can join the Grands Corps techniques d'Etat or prepare the ENA entrance exam.
Some famous alumni
- Philippe Aghion (French economist)
- Alain Aspect (French physicist)
- Laurent Batsch (French economist-President of Paris Dauphine University)
- Bernard Charlès (CEO of Dassault Systemes)
- Michel Lallement (French sociologist)
- Marie-Noëlle Lienemann (French politician)
- Marc Yor (French mathematician)
Notes and references
- Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris
- Ecole Normale supérieure de Lyon
- Grandes Ecoles
- Classes préparatoires