On Campus: Major and Minor are available - Courses in Elementary and Intermediate French are followed by advanced-level courses in language, civilization and literature.
Abroad: The French program is enhanced by the opportunity to study in France and in Quebec. In Angers, France, we offer a summer intensive program to students of all majors and a longer exchange program to French majors. In Chicoutimi, Quebec, we offer a summer total immersion home-stay intensive language program.
Why Study French?
The Historical Significance
Historically, French has been one of the most important languages of the western world. It was the language of diplomacy for hundreds of years. Diplomats visiting Europe used French most frequently as their language of communication. Today, France is playing a leading role in the European Community and the French will maintain their importance in European affairs.
In France, Switzerland, and Belgium, French is an official language, making it more widely spoken than any other language in Europe. It is also spoken in many countries in Africa as well as in several Asian countries, the Caribbean and Polynesia. And of course, it is one of the official languages of Canada (Vive le Quebec libre!).
So, French has held a prestigious position in world affairs for a long time, and this influence is still powerfully felt today.
But there are other reasons to study French! France has always been a nation which views itself as a leader. Think of inventors, of scientists, of artists, of musicians, of writers, of philosophers, of political thinkers. Any significant list would produce names of illustrious Frenchmen and Frenchwomen: Pierre & Marie Curie, Marquette and Champlain, Daguerre, Louis Pasteur, Reni Descartes, Jean-Paul Sartre, Montesquieu, Monet, Renoir, Debussy and Ravel. The list is enormous. But France is a leader in many modern fields today: high-speed trains, spacecraft, telecommunications, technology, medical research, among others.
The Career Significance
So, why study French? Because competence in French can enhance your career possibilities, whatever career you are planning. In engineering business, chemistry, physics, communications, advertising, banking, teaching, travel and tourism, government service, or overseas employment, knowledge of French could be the extra selling point needed. A French degree could be combined with any other specialization to enrich your career preparation.
Why study French? Because a knowledge of the French language and culture can enhance both your career and your quality of life!