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What can studying a language do for my career?

"Knowing another language is a hard skill, but there are many soft skills learned as well. The language is important, but learning a second language changes the way you think

With language skills in high and rising demand, no matter the field you choose, language learners have a distinct competitive advantage over your monolingual peers in the job market.

From health care and government to finance and sports (and everywhere in between), employers are seeking professionals who can communicate with a wide range of individuals both domestically and abroad. They're also seeking multilingual talent for the additional skills they bring to the table - knowing that language learners demonstrate enhanced empathy, tolerance, cultural awareness, and critical thinking and problem-solving abilities.

How do I start my career search?

Some people know exactly how they plan to use their language and culture skills in their career, but with so many different options out there, it's natural to feel overwhelmed at first.

UWL Career Services

First, know that UWL Career Services exists to assist students like you in all aspects of their job search from exploration to career decision-making, from critiquing documents to mock interviews, from internships to full-time jobs, and navigating job offers.

They have an excellent tool for exploring major and careers, which will walk you through a four-step process to gain a deeper understanding of how your language and culture skills can apply to a wide range of disciplines and career pathways.

Their office is located at 1209 Centennial Hall. You can make an appointment for career advising either online through Navigate or by calling them at 608.785.6950.

The Eagle Advantage

Second, we highly recommend you familiarize yourself with the eight core competencies that comprise the Eagle Advantage. These are skills that national employers have highlighted year after year as being critical to success in the workforce.

It's critically important that you recognize the skills you're developing both in and out of the classroom, learn how to articulate them to others, and apply them as you embark on your career journey.

The Eagle Advantage: GCL Edition

Our faculty and staff prepared this handout to help students communicate how their coursework in Global Cultures & Languages connect to the Eagle Advantage career readiness competencies. This provides some example language that you can use to articulate your language skills for future employers, graduate schools, and other professional opportunities.