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  • The École normale supérieure is a French grande école. The ENS was initially conceived during the French Revolution. It was intended to provide the Republic with a new body of teachers, trained in the critical spirit and secular values of the Enlightenment. It has since developed into an elite institution which has become a platform for many of France's brightest young people to pursue high-level careers in government and academia and symbolizes the independence of mind. Founded in 1793 and reorganized by Napoleon, ENS has two main sections and a thorough selection process consisting of written and oral examinations. The students excel in the fields of culture, academic research in the sciences and humanities. During their studies, ENS students hold the status of paid civil servants. The principal goal of ENS is the training of elite professors, researchers and public administrators. Its alumni have provided France with scores of philosophers, writers, scientists, statesmen, officials and diplomats, journalists, lawyers, directors, managers and even officers in the army and churchmen. Wikipedia

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