Why Foreign Language Study is a Good Idea for Every Student

If you are a senior who has engaged with foreign-language study while at Wesleyan, the rationale below will help you explain to prospective employers the skills you have gained through such a course of study.

Why Foreign-Language Study is a Good Idea for Every Student  

We assume if you have reasons to learn a particular language (to study, work, travel, or live abroad or for resources not fully available in English translation), you already know why it is important. Here are reasons to study any language besides English or whatever you regard as your native language:

  1. Many employers, professional schools, and graduate schools see serious study of a second language (potentially, a double-major) as evidence that you can (a) put yourself more easily in others’ (colleagues’, clients’) shoes and (b) communicate more effectively even in English.
  2. You will never know your own language and culture more deeply than by studying another–by looking at it from the outside. Learning to thrive with the unfamiliar is often linked to creativity in many intellectual and professional contexts.
  3. Language learning teaches you to think more clearly and sharpens your brain’s ability to make sense of the world.
  4. Deep study of another culture through its language brings home how much of value will never be made available in English.
  5. Puzzling out another language and culture will help you understand (and empathize with) the difficulties of non-anglophone immigrants, colleagues, clients, and travelers in the U.S., even if you never leave American shores.
  6. Learning another language well makes it easier to learn any language in the future. Even if you never need this, the experience–especially if you study abroad–will make you far more confident in your ability to face any intellectual or professional challenge.  
  7. Foreign-language courses fit easily into study plans: offered on highly varied schedules, they provide a stimulating (and fun!) break from problem-set driven, heavy-reading or arts courses.

Wesleyan offers:

Arabic language and culture: http://www.wesleyan.edu/academics/faculty/aaissa/profile.html

American Sign Language: http://www.wesleyan.edu/lctls/courses.html

Classics (Greek and Latin): http://wesleyan.edu/classics/

East Asian Studies (Chinese, Japanese, Korean): http://wesleyan.edu/ceas/

German studies: http://wesleyan.edu/german/

Hebrew language and culture: http://www.wesleyan.edu/academics/faculty/dkatz01/profile.html

Romance Languages & Literatures (French, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish): http://wesleyan.edu/romance/

Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies program: http://wesleyan.edu/russian/

Any other language: http://www.wesleyan.edu/lctls/silp.html

Do not hesitate to contact any faculty teaching these above language(s).


Study Abroad Photo Contest! Cast Your Vote!

We write to invite you to cast your vote for the best photos featured in our “Wes in the World” exhibit, currently on display in our Center for Global Studies (Fisk Hall).  This exhibit consists of photographs submitted by Wesleyan students who studied abroad this past year.

Prizes will be announced Jan 27, 4:30-6:00pm, at our awards ceremony.  By voting, you will secure for yourself a special invitation to the ceremony, and a chance to meet award-winning photographers!

We encourage you to visit the Center for Global Studies, in Fisk Hall, to see the photographs on display.  In any case, by clicking on the link below, you will be able to view digital versions of these works of student art and cast your ballot.

Don’t delay, vote today! We look forward to receiving your vote and to seeing you on January 27, if not before.

Sincerely, Antonio González, Director of Global Studies and Kia Lor, Assistant Director of Language and Intercultural Learning


For Those Still Considering Study Abroad….

Study Abroad Information Sessions

A representative from each program will be on hand to discuss the program and answer any questions. Students can drop in for the session, no appointment is required.

Tuesday, February 2 – 12:00-1:00–ISA Euroscholars Program—Fisk 302

EuroScholars offers research opportunities in all fields of study. Additional areas of interest are honors programs and undergraduate research offices. Please see list of pre approved programs on the Study Abroad website

Tuesday, February 9 – 12:00-1:00–The Swedish Program—Fisk 302

The Swedish Program is sponsored by a consortium of American colleges and universities and is affiliated with the Stockholm School of Economics, one of the most prestigious universities in Europe for the study of economics, finance, and business.   The Swedish Program offers a full range of liberal arts courses each semester.

Fall, spring or full year. Range of courses taught in English; especially strong in public policy, PSYC, ENGL, FGSS, GOVT/IR, SOC, Swedish language.

Wednesday, February 10 –12:00-1:00– IFSA-Butler—Fisk 210

IFSA-Butler provides quality study abroad opportunities, plus academic and personal support services, for qualified North American undergraduates seeking to earn academic credit through study abroad. IFSA-Butler currently operates programs in Argentina, Australia, Chile, China, Costa Rica, Egypt, England, India, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Peru, the Republic of Ireland, Scotland, Spain and Wales. Please see list of pre approved programs on the Study Abroad website

Thursday, February 11 – 12:00-1:00–IES—Fisk 302

More than 130 academic programs Programs in 35+ cities and 21 countries. Please see list of pre approved programs on the Study Abroad website

Thursday, February 18 – 12:00-1:00–CERGE-EI UPCES in Prague—Fisk 302

UPCES is the undergraduate study abroad program of Charles University and CERGE-EIin Prague, Czech Republic. Classes meet in the Schebek Palace, a historic building in the center of Prague. Courses bring together European and American students in a small and interactive classroom setting. Outside the classroom, UPCES students explore the cultures of Central Europe firsthand. Program trips, excursions, internships, and immersion activities offer opportunities to discover new places, people, and perspectives.

Fall, spring, or full year. Czech language course plus four courses in social sciences and humanities, primarily related to area studies

Wednesday, February 24 – 12:00-1:00–SIT—Fisk 210

SIT offers more than 70 programs in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East, as well as comparative programs in multiple locations. Please see list of pre approved programs on the Study Abroad website. All SIT Study Abroad programs, regardless of type, grapple with the complexities of critical issues and offer students a high level of access to experts and stakeholders relevant to the issues being examined. Learning on SIT programs extends beyond the program center to provide students with holistic, multifaceted, field-based experiences.

Going Global Beyond Study Abroad — Today, Wed. 18 at 5:30 p.m.

Going Global Beyond Study Abroad

In celebration of International Education Week, join a panel of students knowledgeable of international fellowships, graduate school abroad, international internships, conducting research abroad, securing funding for international research or language study. Panelists will share best practices and recommendations in pursuing these opportunities abroad. The panel will be held in the Career Center on Wednesday November 18th beginning at 5:30 PM and moderated by Kate Smith, Associate Director of Fellowships, Internships and Exchanges. Please join us to learn and plan your next international step beyond study abroad.


Website: http://www.wesleyan.edu/cgs/index.html

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/516955898463759/


Info Meeting about Summer Session in Oaxaca, Mexico — Nov. 17

This program is open to students in any year!

Information Session: Summer 2016 in Oaxaca, Mexico

With Professor of Anthropology, Anu Sharma and Associate Director of Study Abroad, Emily Gorlewski

Tuesday, November 17, 2015      South College B2/B3

12-1 p.m.   Pizza will be served   RSVP to study abroad@wesleyan.edu


Course Information    Credits: 2

Dates: May 25-Jun 3: Wesleyan Campus/Jun 5-Jun 24: Oaxaca, Mexico

Description: This course will focus on how indigenous communities are challenging the mainstream growth-oriented development logic promoted by international organizations, and articulating and living radical alternatives to development.


Emily Gorlewski / Associate Director, Study Abroad Office of Study Abroad / Center for Global StudiesWesleyan University  +1 (860) 685-3007  105 Fisk Hall, 262 High St. Middletown, CT 06457  wesleyan.edu/studyabroad 

Romance Languages Open House! 10/12 at Noon

Romance Languages & Literatures 

Open House

Monday, October 12, 2015 at Noon

The Common Room

300 High Street

Food and refreshments

Increase your global potential!

Study French, Italian, Spanish, or Portuguese, and open the door to life and work experiences on five continents.

Major in:

French studies: reach 250 million speakers worldwide (blue)

Italian studies: reach 65 million speakers worldwide (yellow)

Hispanic Literatures & Cultures: reach 420 million speakers worldwide (green)

Romance Studies: combine 2 languages!

Portuguese language (no major): reach 260 million speakers worldwide (orange)

If you are interested in our majors but cannot attend the information session on October 12, please contact Kristine Schiavi (kschiavi@wesleyan.edu)

Study Abroad Deadline for Wes-sponsored Programs — Oct. 1

From the Office of Study Abroad: 

This is a reminder that applications for SPRING 2016 for the Wesleyan-administered programs in BOLOGNA, MADRID, and PARIS are due THURSDAY, OCTOBER 1. This is a firm deadline because all parts of the application can be sent electronically. PLEASE NOTE: the Wesleyan “Permission to Study Abroad” application doubles as the application to these three programs so you DO NOT NEED to complete a separate program application. If you have already done the steps noted BELOW, the permission application and check list are in your student portfolio in the “Study Abroad Information” under the “Academic Career” bucket.

There are 6 documents in the checklist (the parental form has been removed as it is no longer required), including the one-page permission to study abroad application and all of them can be turned in electronically either by completing and hitting “submit” or by uploading the documents.  

A complete application includes the following 6 items:

  • Personal information sheet 
  • Pre-departure Reflection Exercise – written in the target language (250 words, written without assistance)
  • Online Health Information Clearance form
  • Major Advisor Authorization form (for all majors even if you are not earning major credit)
  • Assumption of Risk and Release and Waiver form
  • Standards of Conduct Pledge

If you have NOT started the process and been in our office for an advising session, please do the following first:

Go to the “Academic Career” section in your student portfolio and click on the “Study Abroad application and information” link. This takes you to our landing page and you must:

  • Read the five documents: (Study Abroad Options, Application Procedures, Financial Regulations, Academic Regulations).
  • Complete the “Initial Inquiry” form and click “submit.”
  • Come to our office for an advising session during our drop-in hours (M-W-F 10-noon; T-TH 2-4 p.m.) If you cannot make any of our drop-in hours, please call for an appointment.

After your advising session you will be given access in your portfolio to the Permission to Study Abroad Application and Checklist which you must complete by the October 1 deadline as indicated above. 

If you have questions about the process, please stop by during drop-in hours or call us at 860 685 2550.

Best, Gail Winter, Assistant Director of Study Abroad

105 Fisk Hall, 262 High Street, Phone: 860 685 3006

Fax: 860 685 2551   Url: www.wesleyan.edu/ois

Fair Trade Study Abroad Session — Tues., Sept. 29

Fair Trade Study Abroad Workshop

Interested in a study abroad program that serves and empowers local communities by acting as a decolonizing force? Do you believe in the arts as a means of producing knowledge and creating community? Come find out more about Fair Trade Study Abroad and how the Rehearsing Change program in Ecuador embodies these goals.

 Tuesday, September 29

4:30pm, Usdan 108

Workshop by Daniel Bryan

Executive Director, Pachaysana Institute


Emily Gorlewski, Associate Director

Office of Study Abroad, Center for Global Studies, Wesleyan University, 105 Fisk Hall, 262 High St.

Study Abroad Fair — Fri., Sept. 25

Don’t miss Wesleyan’s 21st Annual Study Abroad Fair!



 (2ND Floor of Fayerweather, next to the Usdan University Center)  

11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Whether you are a first year student, a sophomore deciding on a major, or a student planning to study abroad next semester, this is a wonderful opportunity to meet representatives from many of the over 140 programs available, receive information about the programs and ask questions. Find out all your options for study abroad!

Sponsored by the Office of International Studies