Foreign languages give edge in job market

It’s the time of year when college students and graduates across the country are looking for employment, and Belmont’s Career Services has advice for those looking to set their resumes apart from the rest: learn a foreign language.

“We’re seeing an increase in employers who are seeking applicants with language skills,” Patricia Jacobs, director of Career Services, said. “It’s always beneficial for students to show language skills on their resume.”

With jobs for recent college graduates harder to find because of the recent recession, any skill that gives your resume a boost could be the deciding factor in landing that dream position.

Jacobs especially sees benefits for students seeking careers in particular fields.

“Individuals fluent in multiple languages may want to pursue opportunities with.the government (translation/interpretation, linguistics, diplomacy, foreign service,intelligence); Service and Education (Social Work, hospitals, healthcare organizations, law enforcement, teaching, linguistics); and Business Services,” she said.

Learning certain languages has its benefits as well. “We’re seeing more demand for Spanish,” Jacobs said.

In addition to studying a language, Jacobs recommends studying abroad as a means of deepening one’s knowledge through cultural immersion. More than just an opportunity to grow and learn, studying abroad shows potential employers that you have an understanding of the world that extends well beyond Belmont’s campus.

GoingGlobal, a feature of Belmont’s Career Services website, serves as another resource for students wishing to broaden their cultural horizons. Jacobs also recommend students meet with professors who specialize in their language of choice.

Belmont currently offers courses in Chinese, French, German, Italian, Latin, Russian and Spanish, as well as a wide variety of study abroad opportunities to fit students needs for language and culture studies

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