College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences > Academics > Modern Languages > Student Resources > Language Resources > German
German is a major world language that is spoken in Austria, Germany, Luxemburg, Lichtenstein and Switzerland. In the European Union, it is the principal business language, second only to English. Knowledge of the German language and German-speaking cultures gives students access to positions in international business, government and communications, as well as careers in education, music, theater and the arts.
The demand for knowledge of German for commercial purposes has only grown over the last decade. A global mindset for Americans is essential for keeping our role as a major player in the international market. A study of 1,250 businesses and industries indicated they want college graduates with international business skills. Among the most desired skills of future employees were:
Students are also able to attend events elsewhere in Chicago, from film screenings to literary readings to concerts at venues like the Goethe-Institut Chicago, the DANK-Haus, the Gene Siskel Film Center, and Constellation.
Graduates of our program have gone on to earn prestigious and highly competitive Fulbright fellowships from the U.S. government or spend a funded year in Germany as scholars in the German Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange, find rewarding employment at the German Embassy in Washington D.C., hold leadership positions in local cultural institutions like the Deutsch-Amerikanisch Nationalkongress, gain experience in the commercial sector through work at the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest, and find out first hand what German cultural diplomacy looks like with internships at the Goethe-Institut Chicago, the Chicago location of the Federal Republic of Germany’s cultural representative. Our graduates have also had success following more conventional paths as well, enrolling in graduate programs, attending law school, and finding long-term employment in Germany and Austria.
Often our students have distinguished themselves from competitors by combining their BA in German with another major of their interested, something that has been facilitated by recent updates to the German BA, with its three concentrations in German Language and Literature, Commercial German, and German Studies, and this flexibility allows students to double count coursework completed for another major or for Learning Domain credit.For more information about what you can do with a language major, please click here.
More than 750 American companies do business in German-speaking countries, including America Online (AOL), Citibank, Federal Express, Ford, Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, Starbucks, Merck, Merrill Lynch and United Parcel Service (UPS).
Additional job sites and recommendations for finding an internship can be found posted on this How Germany Ticks website.
Please note that the following list of websites is a list of ideas, not recommendations. Students should thoroughly research their options and consult the Study Abroad Office before making any study-abroad decisions. Please also note that the number of credits/classes students may complete in a winter/spring quarter versus a spring semester may not be the same. Please review information about study abroad and degree progress provided under advising FAQs and plan accordingly.