"If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart." —Nelson Mandela
World Languages and Literatures
The study of languages has become essential to any global citizen’s education as the world and its nations become increasingly connected. Being able to effectively communicate with people from different parts of the world not only enhances one's ability to think outside the boundaries of his or her native culture, but it is also a practical skill that can be applied to any line of work. However, global citizenship does not end at language proficiency—our higher-level classes are designed to deepen students' familiarity with the culture in which the target language is embedded. By discussing different texts in the chosen language, students will enhance their linguistic skills and develop a more refined consciousness of the culture’s traditions and idiosyncrasies. Our goal is to develop in our students a cultural competency that will allow them to enter the world aware of how they relate to and approach other cultures, so that they are prepared to successfully use and apply their knowledge and abilities in whatever field interests them.
The Spanish Program
Step outside your door within the United States and it won’t be long before you see the importance of understanding the Spanish language and its related cultures. Travel beyond our borders to Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, South America, or Europe, and you’re very likely to need Spanish to communicate with some of the 400 million speakers of the language around the globe. To participate fully in the international community, learning to communicate in a language like Spanish is invaluable.
Skidmore College offers a wide array of courses in Spanish language, literature, and culture, including Peninsular, Latin American, and Latino focus areas. Students can pursue Spanish as a major, minor, interdepartmental major, or double major. Popular interdepartmental majors include Spanish and business, Spanish and government, and Spanish and English. In addition to these, students are often creative in crafting their own combinations of majors to further their ambitions and to enhance their future careers, as a student did recently by majoring in Spanish and theater.
The Spanish Major: Students majoring in Spanish must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours above the Intermediate Spanish course, including Communicating in Spanish, Spanish American Literature and Cultures, Spanish Peninsular Literature and Culture, and the Senior Seminar.
The Spanish Minor: The minor consists of a minimum of five courses, totaling not less than 18 credit hours, including Communicating in Spanish, Spanish American Literature and Cultures, and Spanish Peninsular Literature and Culture.
- Spanish in the Media
- The Literary Artist
- Business Spanish
- Spanish for the Health Profession
- Communicating in Spanish
Study-abroad programs: Whether you are majoring or minoring in Spanish, nothing helps you develop fluency in the language and your understanding of Hispanic cultures like studying abroad. Plan early in your educational career, so that your degree requirements allow for a semester or a year abroad.
The opportunities are endless! You may choose to study through our Skidmore Program in Spain and live in Madrid or Alcalá de Henares. There are also many approved study programs in Mexico, South or Central America, and the Caribbean. Furthermore, in many places you can immerse yourself even further into the culture by being involved in volunteer work or internships.
Find out more at the Office of Off-Campus and Exchanges site:http://www.skidmore.edu/ocse/.
Recent internships/fellowships: Sally Jergan-Smith ’15: Backstretch Employee Service Team at the Saratoga Horse Track. Saratoga Springs, N.Y. Katherine Pugliese ’16:Proyecto Hetaira. Helping Prostitutes in Madrid. Madrid, Spain. Meagan Provinsal ’14: Fulbright Fellowship winner, Brazil. Sarah Brandt ’14: Fulbright Fellowship winner, Spain.
Skidmore students who graduate with a major or a minor in foreign languages and literatures are equipped to pursue a wide variety of careers including education, business, government, law, and media-related professions. For more, see the following webpage.