Spanish, the second language of the United States, is an excellent choice for students pursuing a career in any field. A variety of courses are offered at every level in grammar, composition, conversation and literature, as well as those reflecting current issues and promoting cultural awareness. Medical and Business Spanish courses provide the necessary knowledge to meet professional goals. The summer abroad program in Madrid, Encuentro Espaņol, offers the opportunity to earn six credit hours toward the major or minor, while experiencing total immersion in the language and culture of Spain. Students may also spend a semester of study and service in the Dominican Republic through Encuentro Dominicano, or profit from other study abroad opportunities through the Office of International Programs. Finally, many opportunities for involvement and practice of the Spanish language abound on campus: a Latino Student Association, the Spanish Table, a Spanish Club, and activities offered through the Office of Multicultural Affairs.
Why Study Spanish?
Knowing any second language is important; but when you choose Spanish, there are added benefits due to several factors:
- Spanish, together with English and Chinese, is among the most spoken languages in the world. It is the second most spoken language in terms of native speakers.
- Spanish is the second most used language in business and in international communication, and an official language of the UN and other organizations.
- In the US alone close to 35 million people speak Spanish, making the US the fourth largest Spanish-speaking country.
- As this world is rapidly becoming multicultural, Spanish, together with Arabic and Chinese, has been recognized as a key language for the future.
Hispanic consumers are the fastest-growing market segment in the United States and their population has grown by more than 60% in the last decade. Their buying power is expected to exceed $926 million by the end of this year. Therefore, learning Spanish is rapidly becoming a professional necessity. More and more companies value employees with a knowledge of Spanish since it gives them access to one of the fastest growing markets in the world. Knowledge in this language gives you an advantage in employment opportunities and promising salary potential.
On a more personal level, the ability to speak Spanish gives you:
- An enhanced travel experience to over 21 countries and 4 continents
- An advantage and head start in learning other Latin-based languages such as Portuguese, French and Italian.
- A unique exposure to a rich cultural and linguistic history. Everyone has heard of the most acclaimed writer of the Spanish Golden Age, Miguel de Cervantes and his novel El Quijote. Many know of the painters Pablo Picasso, Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, movie director Pedro Almodovar, writers like Isabel Allende, Gabriel García Márquez and numerous pop artists who have influenced the main stream of American Culture, such as Ricky Martin, Jennifer López, Marc Anthony, Zelma Hyek, Chakira, Penelope Cruz, Celia Cruz, Tito Puentes, Andy García, Antonio Banderas and many more.