Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2019-2020

Foreign Language

College of Humanities and Sciences

Concentration(s):
French
Program description

The foreign language program offers a varied interdisciplinary humanities curriculum, global in scope and designed to increase students’ knowledge about the cultures and traditions, languages, literature and media, history, values, concerns, and aspirations of peoples in different countries and regions of the world. The goal of the program is ultimately also to both broaden students’ comparative intercultural perspectives and develop their cross-cultural communication abilities. Students have the option to pursue a focus or even combination of concentrations in foreign language(s), area studies and/or global issues (in either cinema and/or social justice), depending upon their interests and career plans. Within each chosen concentration or minor, the range of offerings allows for flexibility in configuring each individual’s course of study, which can be organized in a manner that best suits a student’s particular needs.

The Bachelor of Arts in Foreign Language will qualify students to pursue any of a number of career paths, including international communications, business and marketing, aid and development, journalism, or education; government foreign service, international affairs, immigration service or the Peace Corps; nongovernmental organizations involved in development, relief programs, immigration or human rights advocacy; or public relations in a multicultural environment. Graduates of our program will also find opportunities in teaching at home or abroad, as well as in work with a variety of public-service organizations. In addition, an undergraduate degree in foreign language provides excellent background and qualifications for admittance to graduate degree programs in a number of humanities disciplines, including foreign languages and international studies, as well as in international law, business or journalism.

Career opportunities
  • The US government
  • Interpreter/translator, teacher
  • International political organizations, embassies, and consultants
  • Import/export or international banking
  • Hospitality industry
Change of major requirements
2.25

Bachelor-level job titles
  • Adult English as a Second Language Teacher
  • Air Traffic Controller
  • Bank Teller
  • City and Regional Planning Aids
  • Editors
  • High School Teacher
  • Human Resource Specialist
  • Immigration and Customs Inspector
  • Interpreters and Translators
  • Proofreaders and Copy Markers
  • Social and Human Services Assistant
  • Travel Guide
Graduate and professional level job titles
  • Diplomat
  • Foreign Correspondent
  • Intelligence Agency Officer
  • Linguistics Specialist
Degree requirements in Bulletin
Plan of study in Bulletin
Highest level of math required
  • MATH 131
Science required
  • 1-2 additional science courses
Foreign language requirements
  • Yes
Additional tuition/fees
  • No
GPA requirements (to progress/graduate in the major)
  • 2.25
Department name:
School of World Studies
Building/room location:
312 North Shafer Street
Campus (where 75% of courses are taken):
Monroe park
Phone:
(804) 827-1111
Email:
info-sws@vcu.edu

Major map compass icon
Major map

Explore
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor to review your CSI self-report, start goal planning, and to discuss tutoring, electives, & degree progression.
  • Take a tour to learn about library spaces, services, & to find out how to get research help.
  • Map out a 4-year course plan in Degree Works' Student Educational Planner.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.  
  • Take WRLD 203/INTL 203.
  • Either continue language course sequence from high school or begin new language sequence.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Apply to join the Honors College.
  • Get involved and meet new friends through VCU Student Government or one of over 450 student clubs and organizations.
  • Register to vote in Virginia and explore Richmond’s many museums and parks.
  • Apply to live in one of VCU's four Living-Learning Programs.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Visit a study abroad fair and complete Rams Abroad 101 online to learn about study abroad options.
  • Review the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs website and follow them on social media for programs, events, resources and other ways to engage.
  • Consider the Peace Corps Prep Program through VCU Globe to expand skills in global leadership and intercultural communication.
  • Make an appointment with the National Scholarship Office to explore study abroad and national scholarship opportunities.
  • Attend VCU’s annual Intercultural Festival.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Complete your Handshake profile and opt-in to industry email lists.
  • Consider applying for a federal work-study (FWS) job on- or off-campus through the VCU Career Services and Handshake.
  • Create a draft resume and have it reviewed by VCU Career Services during drop-ins.
  • Explore innovation and business/non-profit creation with the da Vinci Center.
  • Discuss with your advisor and faculty how to gain experience through extracurricular activities.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Explore “What Can I Do With This Major” to learn about employers in your field of study.
  • Build a LinkedIn profile with Career Services, connect to at least 10 people, and check out the VCU alumni page.
  • Join Students Today Alumni Tomorrow (STAT) to connect to VCU traditions, networking opportunities, and fellow Rams.
  • Access your free credit report and begin making responsible credit choices to prepare for your future.

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Get familiar with the research process with the VCU Libraries Research Basics Guide. Ask questions about how to use the library.
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes, and strategies for success in your program.
  • Complete all prerequisite coursework for major (through 202-level of target language).
  • Explore scholarship opportunities for study abroad and strategies for degree success.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Meet with a faculty member to discuss your personal and professional interests.
  • Take a service-learning class or volunteer to address a social issue (Hands on Greater Richmond).
  • Explore peer leadership opportunities or apply for I-LEAD Connect or Alternative Spring Break.
  • Join a foreign language club.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Attend Diversity Scholars in Research Week.
  • Consider short-term, semester and year-long Study Abroad opportunities.
  • Get to know other VCU students and meet new friends from all over the world at a monthly Global Café.
  • Join a cultural or identity-related organization.
  • Attend the SWS Student Research Conference and other International-related events.
  • Attend OMSA Social Justice Conference. 
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
  • Gain practical experience related to career goals through internships, shadowing, part-time work, or independent skill building.
  • Create an ePortfolio to document academic/professional experiences, accomplishments, and reflections.
  • Attend Career & Internship Fairs and other professional development events. 
  • Engage in an active process of career exploration via SWS programming (ongoing sequence of workshops) and via Career Services.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Get plugged into VCULink to connect with students and alumni.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Consider who you would ask to serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   
  • Meet with a coach at The Money Spot to set financial goals, understand student loans, and create spending plans.

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • See your academic and career advisors regularly to discuss your progress towards graduation and career planning.
  • Enhance your business, software, technology and creative skills using LinkedIn Learning.
  • Deepen your expertise at finding information in your discipline by working with your subject expert librarian & using research guides.
  • Complete WRLD 302 and minimum of 15 credits of 300-level coursework in target language.
  • Start developing your World ePass portfolio.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Create a community-engaged research project.
  • Attend civic meetings, such as school board, neighborhood associations, city council, or state legislative sessions.
  • Make an appointment with the National Scholarship Office to explore post-graduate scholarship and fellowship opportunities, such as the Fulbright Student Scholarship.
  • Create and complete a foreign language related community-engaged research project.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department. 
  • Attend a program through the Wellness Center.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Actively develop your communication and interpersonal skills for future work on multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Apply to be a Diversity Ambassador with the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs.
  • Richmond is known for hosting a wide array of festivals! Learn about new cultures, food, and music by attending one of these events.
  • Participate in summer, semester-length or year-long study-abroad experience.
  • Participate in Foreign Language discussion groups and Conversation Partner program. 
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Seek research opportunities to refine goals and learn the discipline required for success.
  • Apply for summer research funding through the VCU Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program.
  • Update your ePortfolio.
  • Apply for the Graduate School Mentorship Program to learn more about graduate school and the graduate student experience.
  • Start research in preparation for presentation at the Student Research Conference.
  • Identify at least three career options within your field of interest that you may want to pursue. 
  • Volunteer as a foreign language tutor in area schools, or as a tutor for children and adults learning English. 
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Talk to advisors, faculty, and career services about graduate school versus a job.
  • Research graduate/professional schools at least one year in advance of application deadlines. Study for and complete any admissions exams the summer before your senior year. 
  • Prepare for job offer negotiation by researching salaries, benefits, and other opportunities for flexibility.
  • Based on career goals, talk to a career/academic advisor or a faculty member about whether graduate school or a job fits your career goals.
  • Join job listserv sites that provide access to job postings in desired fields. Revisit gap analysis assessment and continue adjusting strategic career plan with Career Services.

Excel
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met. 
  • Take WRLD 490 Senior Capstone.
  • Complete two 400-level courses in major at VCU.
  • Do an internship (FRLG 493) as a world language teaching assistant in local school systems.
  • Complete the World ePass by the middle of your final semester.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Serve in a leadership role on campus or as a board member of a local community organization.
  • Consider applying for a year-long service opportunity after graduation through programs like Peace Corps, Fulbright Student Scholars, Literacy Lab, Richmond Teacher Residency, Teach for America, or City Year.
  • Attend professional conferences that offer student rates or scholarships.
  • Consider jobs in the nonprofit sector.
  • Volunteer or take on a leadership role within a student organization that relates to foreign languages.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in your field.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations.
  • Build your intercultural competence by becoming a conversation partner to an international student.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department. 
  • Attend OMSA Tunnel of Oppression.
  • Learn to teach English through VCU’s TEFL certificate, an internationally-recognized credential for overseas employment as an English teacher.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Reflect on the experiential learning you have engaged in thus far, and discuss with current or potential mentors (peers, faculty, advisors, alumni, professionals).
  • Continue to engage in research to create more content for your ePortfolio.
  • Present your research at conference/meeting such as UROP Undergraduate Research Symposium or other conferences. 
  • Gain practical experience related to your career goal through internships, externships and skill building.
  • Take on a leadership role in a student organization or club or go deeper in your service opportunities.
  • Expand your network and remember that you can network anywhere.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Complete exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for next steps after graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Have a personal statement or cover letter reviewed and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services. 
  • Engage with the VCU Alumni Association at Grad Fair, Grad Bash, and by joining a VCULink Industry Network and alumni chapter as you prepare to graduate.
Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2019-2020

Foreign Language

College of Humanities and Sciences

Concentration(s):
French | German | Spanish
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE GET REAL EXPERIENCE PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
Explore Year 1
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor to review your CSI self-report, start goal planning, and to discuss tutoring, electives, & degree progression.
  • Take a tour to learn about library spaces, services, & to find out how to get research help
  • Map out a 4-year course plan in Degree Works' Student Educational Planner.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.  
  • Take WRLD 203/INTL 203.
  • Either continue language course sequence from high school or begin new language sequence.
Experience Year 2
  • Get familiar with the research process with the VCU Libraries Research Basics Guide. Ask questions about how to use the library.
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes, and strategies for success in your program.
  • Complete all prerequisite coursework for major (through 202-level of target language).
  • Explore scholarship opportunities for study abroad and strategies for degree success.
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
  • Gain practical experience related to career goals through internships, shadowing, part-time work, or independent skill building.
  • Create an ePortfolio to document academic/professional experiences, accomplishments, and reflections.
  • Attend Career & Internship Fairs and other professional development events. 
  • Engage in an active process of career exploration via SWS programming (ongoing sequence of workshops) and via Career Services
  • Get plugged into VCULink to connect with students and alumni.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Consider who you would ask to serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   
  • Meet with a coach at The Money Spot to set financial goals, understand student loans, and create spending plans.
Year 3
  • See your academic and career advisors regularly to discuss your progress towards graduation and career planning.
  • Enhance your business, software, technology and creative skills using LinkedIn Learning
  • Deepen your expertise at finding information in your discipline by working with your subject expert librarian & using research guides
  • Complete WRLD 302 and minimum of 15 credits of 300-level coursework in target language.
  • Start developing your World ePass portfolio.
  • Actively develop your communication and interpersonal skills for future work on multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Apply to be a Diversity Ambassador with the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs
  • Richmond is known for hosting a wide array of festivals! Learn about new cultures, food, and music by attending one of these events.
  • Participate in summer, semester-length or year-long study-abroad experience.
  • Participate in Foreign Language discussion groups and Conversation Partner program. 
  • Seek research opportunities to refine goals and learn the discipline required for success.
  • Apply for summer research funding through the VCU Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program
  • Update your ePortfolio.
  • Apply for the Graduate School Mentorship Program to learn more about graduate school and the graduate student experience.
  • Start research in preparation for presentation at the Student Research Conference.
  • Identify at least three career options within your field of interest that you may want to pursue. 
  • Volunteer as a foreign language tutor in area schools, or as a tutor for children and adults learning English. 
  • Talk to advisors, faculty, and career services about graduate school versus a job.
  • Research graduate/professional schools at least one year in advance of application deadlines. Study for and complete any admissions exams the summer before your senior year. 
  • Prepare for job offer negotiation by researching salaries, benefits, and other opportunities for flexibility.
  • Based on career goals, talk to a career/academic advisor or a faculty member about whether graduate school or a job fits your career goals.
  • Join job listserv sites that provide access to job postings in desired fields. Revisit gap analysis assessment and continue adjusting strategic career plan with Career Services
Excel Year 4
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met. 
  • Take WRLD 490 Senior Capstone.
  • Complete two 400-level courses in major at VCU.
  • Do an internship (FRLG 493) as a world language teaching assistant in local school systems.
  • Complete the World ePass by the middle of your final semester.
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in your field.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations.
  • Build your intercultural competence by becoming a conversation partner to an international student.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department. 
  • Attend OMSA Tunnel of Oppression.
  • Learn to teach English through VCU’s TEFL certificate, an internationally-recognized credential for overseas employment as an English teacher.
  • Reflect on the experiential learning you have engaged in thus far, and discuss with current or potential mentors (peers, faculty, advisors, alumni, professionals).
  • Continue to engage in research to create more content for your ePortfolio.
  • Present your research at conference/meeting such as UROP Undergraduate Research Symposium or other conferences. 
  • Gain practical experience related to your career goal through internships, externships and skill building.
  • Take on a leadership role in a student organization or club or go deeper in your service opportunities.
  • Expand your network and remember that you can network anywhere.
  • Complete exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for next steps after graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Have a personal statement or cover letter reviewed and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services. 
  • Engage with the VCU Alumni Association at Grad Fair, Grad Bash, and by joining a VCULink Industry Network and alumni chapter as you prepare to graduate.