Modern Languages and Literature Major


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About the Major

Majoring in a second or third language prepares students to participate, lead and innovate in an increasingly interconnected world. New languages help students understand people of diverse cultures and backgrounds, as well as better understand their own culture and language.

Jobs in Modern Languages and Literature

  • Data analyst
  • Travel and tourism manager
  • Translator/interpreter
  • Diplomat
  • International development specialist
  • International marketing coordinator

Related Programs

Perceptive Professor Sets Student on Right Course

Sophia Sloan

Starting at South as a biomedical sciences major, Sophia Sloan also took classes in Spanish because she’d enjoyed it in high school. One day, her Spanish professor sat her down and said, “You’re really good at Spanish. Have you thought about switching?”

Sloan had never told her professor about her growing realization that biomedical sciences wasn’t a fit. Somehow, the professor picked up on it. Later, the languages department offered her a job as a tutor. She liked it so much that she decided to teach Spanish as a career, preferably at the university level.

“That job is fantastic,” she said. “It really showed me that I enjoy teaching. It showed me what I wanted to do with my life.”


“You can tell that the professors see us as more than just faces in a classroom.”


It also heightened her already-high respect for the faculty at South. “You can tell that the professors see us as more than just faces in a classroom. They definitely are perceptive of what we’re good at.”

Sloan won several scholarships, including the Margaret Pol Stock Award for excellence in two languages (her second is French), and was president of South’s chapter of the Phi Sigma Iota international foreign language honor society. She especially appreciated that scholarships are available to allow language majors to study abroad. “There are so many different opportunities for success within the department.”

The COVID-19 pandemic ended up disrupting study abroad trips for students across the country, including Sloan’s planned journey to Spain. With the department’s help, she found another way to test her Spanish skills while picking up idioms and other quirks of the language from native speakers. “I’m doing a virtual study-abroad program,” she said, “and we have a whole unit just on slang. So I’m excited about that.”

Did You Know?

  • Concentrations for the major are available in French, German, Russian and Spanish. Other languages, including Chinese, are taught through the intermediate level.
  • Our graduates have been admitted to prestigious graduate programs and work in the United States and abroad in a variety of fields, including teaching, national and international law, the nonprofit sphere, government and business.
  • All of our students study abroad for a summer, a semester or a year. We provide scholarships and grants to make study abroad affordable.



Dr. Susan McCready
Chair, Professor
Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literature
(251) 460-6291

Curriculum and Degree Requirements