Why students should learn another language

Photo courtesy of Pixabay user Tumisu.

I know when you are sitting in a foreign language class, you might think that you do not need to learn the language. However, you are incorrect in this thinking. There are great benefits to learning a new language. Imagine being in another country and not understanding the language that is being used. If you had prepared and learned the new language before going to a new country, you would be able to communicate with the native and also better discover a new culture.

McDaniel offers class in seven different languages: French, Spanish, German, American Sign Language (ASL), Arabic, Latin and Chinese. In the world today, the top languages are English, Chinese and Spanish.

Imagine owning a business and your workers do not speak English. You can learn to communicate with them by learning their language. By doing so, you will be able to communicate effectively with people that do not know or understand your language.

When you travel to another country, you should learn the language or try learning the language while you are there. It will be beneficial if you ever need assistance or you are just buying something. You do not want to feel lost in the country you are visiting.

Another reason to learn another language is to boost your employment chances. Imagine applying for a job against another person that speaks a different language. Both of you have the exact same skill set and experience. Who do you think would get the job? Well, there is a higher chance that someone that knows how to speak a different language will get the job.

Studies show that knowledge of a foreign language will bring economic benefits. The Center for American Progress has noted that immigrants are 30 percent more likely to start a business than are nonimmigrants. A study done by the University of Florida found that fully bilingual Hispanics earn an average of nearly $7,000 more per year than their peers who speak only English.

Another reason for learning a new language is that you will discover a new culture. I personally like learning the costumes and traditions of a place that I have never been. Additionally, I am Mexican, and I love everything that has to do with Mexico. I love the traditions, especially the Day of the Dead and everything that happens during Christmas. Sometime during my college career, I would like to go abroad to Mexico.  I am very lucky because my first language is Spanish. I am going to Mexico because I want learn more about culture and the heritages of my past.

The culture of a place and the language are two completely different things, but they feed into each other. By discovering a new culture, you can enrich your experience. Once you know the language you will feel more welcome into that culture and be able to understand their traditions a bit better. Ultimately, learning about another culture can help you realize who you are as an individual.

These are just some of the benefits of learning a new language. So, next time you are learning a language, take the time to actually learn it. Chances for more gainful employment and cultural discovery await you.





Featured image via Nicolas Raymond on Flickr. Licensed under Creative Commons.