École Normale Supérieure

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Group.png École Normale Supérieure  
(Graduate schoolWebsiteRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
HeadquartersParis, France

The École normale supérieure; also known as ENS Paris) is one of the most selective and prestigious graduate schools in Paris, France. It is one of the French grandes écoles (higher education establishment outside the framework of the public university system).

It was initially conceived during the French Revolution and was intended to provide the Republic with a new body of professors, trained in the critical spirit and secular values of the Enlightenment. It has since developed into an institution which has become a platform for a select few of France's students to pursue careers in government and academia.

The school is very small in student numbers. Its core of students, who are called normaliens, are selected via a competitive exam called a concours (baccalaureate + 2 years) after a preparatory class. Two hundred normaliens are thus recruited every year, half of them in the sciences and the same number in the humanities, and receive a monthly stipend (around €1,350/month in 2018), and in exchange they sign a ten-year contract to work for the state.

The principal goal of ENS is the training of professors, researchers and public administrators. Among its alumni there are 14 Nobel Prize laureates including 8 in Physics (ENS has the highest proportion of Nobel laureates among its alumni of any institution worldwide, 12 Fields Medalists (the most of any university in the world), more than half the recipients of the CNRS's Gold Medal (France's highest scientific prize), several hundred members of the Institut de France, and scores of politicians and statesmen.

The ENS increasingly came to be seen by some as an antechamber to the École nationale d'administration, as more young students drawn to politics and public policy began to be attracted to it, such as future President of the Republic Georges Pompidou, Prime Ministers Alain Juppé and Laurent Fabius, and ministers such as Bruno Le Maire and Michel Sapin, respectively the current and former Ministers of Finance of France.


Alumni on Wikispooks

Alexandre Adler23 September 1950FranceJournalist
French academic
Raymond Aron14 March 190517 October 1983FranceJournalist
French sociologist who attended 3 Bilderbergs from 1957 to 1966
Philippe Camus28 June 1948FranceBusinesspersonFrench Bilderberger who as president of GIFAS attended the 2003,4,5 Bilderbergs
Laurent Fabius20 August 1946FrancePolitician
Michel Foucault15 October 192625 June 1984Author
Social critic
Bernard-Henri Lévy5 November 1948FrancePropagandistA French 'philosopher' who has created an intellectual alibi for every US/NATO intervention since the 1980's. A militant supporter and apologist for Zionism and the Israeli state
Georges Pompidou5 July 19112 April 1974FrancePoliticianPresident of France from 1969 until his death in 1974 from a rare form of cancer. 1960 Bilderberg
Jean-Bernard Raimond6 February 19267 March 2016FrancePolitician
Michel Sapin9 April 1952France
Jean-Paul Sartre21 June 190515 April 1980Philosopher