Minor Or Major In A Foreign Language? 7 Things To Do With Your Degree

Some people believe that majoring or minoring in a foreign language is a bad idea.

These people think that having foreign language credentials will not benefit anyone, and that individuals with degrees in a foreign language will have a hard time finding a job.

Minor Or Major In A Foreign Language? 7 Things To Do With Your Degree

The truth is that there are plenty of career opportunities out there for individuals that either minor or major in a foreign language, and if you’re wondering what your language degree can do for you, the following are some of the best career opportunities available.

1. Translator


Provide a translating service

There are plenty of opportunities available for individuals that are fluent in a foreign language, especially in the translation department. Translation companies are always in need of quality professional translators and transcriptionists from around the globe.

These companies provide translation services to companies looking to have their business documents translated. In most cases, these translators have the ability to work from home and set their own hours, which can be extremely beneficial. Other companies may be in need of a professional translator to keep on retainer to help them translate documents or be present to translate international meetings or conferences. Even the military is constantly looking for bilingual individuals that can help aid the troops in missions while overseas.

2. Teacher

Foreign language is still taught in schools, and if you have a strong knowledge of a foreign language, you can use this to teach middle school or high school foreign language classes. Because foreign language teachers are not easy to come by, some individuals have made a significant amount of money as a foreign language teacher, as schools are willing to pay decent money for decent teachers.

If you’re fluent in Spanish, you may even be able to teach an ESL class. These classes range from elementary schools all through the collegiate level. You can help Spanish-speaking individuals learn how to speak English. These classes may be full-time in some areas, or you may only teach on an as-needed basis.

There are also plenty of ESL teachers needed overseas. Many countries hire American bilingual teachers to go to their country and teach children how to speak English. This can be a great way for you to help others while touring the world and meeting new people.

3. Tutor

Many students that have trouble with their foreign language classes (or students whose native language isn’t English) are in need of a tutor. You can offer your services on a freelance basis, setting your own hours and wages. You can also work for tutoring companies, such as Sylvan Learning Center or Huntington Learning Center. These companies test their tutors and do extensive background checks, and they also provide you with set hours and set wages. These companies may also provide you with consistent tutoring gigs.

4. Foreign Business Associate

If you have a knack for business, having a degree in a foreign language can make you a better candidate than others without that degree, especially if the company does plenty of business overseas. If you’re fluent in a foreign language, this skill could make you capable of handling foreign business deals for your company. You could be put in charge of your own clients and handle any (or all) foreign business affairs for the company. If this is something that interests you, it’s best to research companies that deal with foreign companies.

5. Travel Airlines, Cruises

It’s always best for cruise ship employees or flight attendants to be fluent in foreign languages, especially if they work for companies that constantly visit other countries. Knowing a foreign language can help you better communicate with your passengers and guests, which will make their encounter with your company much more pleasurable. You will be able to assist with their needs, and they won’t be frustrated trying to communicate with someone who doesn’t understand them.

6. Healthcare

Obviously you will also need a medical degree, but knowing a foreign language can be extremely beneficial while working in healthcare. This country is full of people that don’t speak English as their first language, and knowing a foreign language can help you communicate with patients so that they’re treated effectively. By knowing a foreign language, you’re also enabling yourself to participate in programs such as Doctors Without Borders or other non-profit programs that can provide healthcare to other countries.

7. Government

There are plenty of government positions that require foreign language skills. Certain agencies, such as the FBI or CIA deal with plenty of individuals that speak a foreign language, so they need people that can translate documents or interpret conversations. Other government agencies, such as local governments, can also benefit from having bilingual individuals on staff, especially if the area is generally multicultural. For example, the local social security office in a predominantly Polish neighborhood would benefit from having Polish-speaking individuals on staff. This way, there is no lapse in communication, and all situations can be handled quickly and appropriately.

From the options above in professions a career as a translator offers the most flexibility in terms of scheduling and the ability to work from home.

Kristi Munno is a freelance writer with many years of writing experience. She researches her topics well and writes very well-written and informative articles.

cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by kimubert

Author: SmartStudent

SmartStudent is an educational portal that provides information & advice to aspiring students. regarding applying to university, choosing a course, what to take to university, finding student accommodation and much more.

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