Spanish is a concentration option for students at the University of South Alabama pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Languages. Students can also choose Spanish as a minor. Spanish is one of six official languages of the United Nations and, along with English, the official language of the Organization of American States. Spanish is spoken by more than 350 million people worldwide.
Spanish in the U.S.
In the U.S., more than 30 million people speak Spanish. The official language of twenty nations, Spanish has become a vibrant cultural source of expression in the U.S., to which increased media and marketing attention attest. In fact, Spanish was spoken in what is now U.S. territory a century before English was and gave names to former Spanish colonial regions and cities such as Colorado and Los Angeles. The largest Spanish-speaking groups in the U.S. today are peoples of Mexican, Cuban, Puerto Rican and Dominican heritage. At all levels of public and private education, Spanish is the most widely-taught second language in the U.S.
Careers in Spanish
The four skills in Spanish (listening, speaking, reading and writing), plus cultural knowledge, are a job boost (and often a pay boost) for any career. In business, law, medicine, the sciences, social work, ministry, and communications, competent abilities in a second language often lead to more job opportunities and promotions, while increasing skills in, and awareness of, one's native tongue.
Some successful Spanish majors and minors from South have pursued connections with local businesses, the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, and local law enforcement agencies. Students of Spanish can also explore possibilities in translation, editing, communications, government, international relations and human resources. The Spanish program at South is proud of its successful alumni, a great many of whom are now high school teachers and university professors.
The USA Department of Modern and Classical Languages works closely with the USA College of Education and Professional Studies in preparing the foreign language educators of tomorrow. Although primary and secondary education teaching is a popular field for Spanish, it is by no means the only link. Other students opt to pursue graduate study in Spanish, leading to an M.A., M.A.T. or Ph.D. in literature, linguistics, pedagogy, Latin American studies or European studies. Previous and current students have been accepted into graduate programs at The Pennsylvania State University, Vanderbilt University, Bowling Green University, Duke, Texas A & M, The University of Florida (Tallahassee), Arizona and New Mexico, among other schools.
The Spanish program at South offers more than just its courses. Study abroad gives students the opportunity to immerse themselves in another language and culture, and to see the world from a different perspective. We offer faculty-led study abroad opportunities during the summer in Spain and Latin America. Students can also enroll in other study abroad programs, with faculty approval.
In addition to the Departmental Study Abroad Grant, Spanish students are eligible for the Graciela Blanco Scholarship and the Felicia Cooley Scholarship, both of which can be used to offset study abroad expenses. Students may also be eligible for the Dyess and Stock Awards. See Scholarships for more information.