If you want to major in French, Western Michigan University offers two options for you. The first is a language, literature and culture program leading to a Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of Arts and Sciences. The second is also a language, literature and culture program, but it leads to a teaching degree from the College of Education and Human Development.
Both options include a strong focus on French language and culture. Basic coursework covers fundamental, intermediate and advanced French, French life and culture or Francophone life and culture, literature and linguistics. To round out your program, you will choose electives with the help of your advisor. The education curriculum is similar to the arts and sciences curriculum, but provides you with additional training that will prepare you to teach French at the middle and high school levels.
As a student in WMU's French program, you will be strongly encouraged to take advantage of study abroad opportunities, including our own programs in Besançon and Lyon, France, and Québec City.
The Department of World Languages and Literatures organizes a weekly French Table, led by a French assistant, which will give you a forum through which to practice your French in a laid-back, conversational setting and meet others who share your interests. The French Club, a registered student organization, also hosts events and activities that focus on French culture.
Each year, the department holds a Francophone Film Festival that presents new films from countries and regions in which the French language plays a significant role. The festival is open to a wider community and will give you an opportunity to experience a broader, more diverse view of the many world cultures that express themselves in French.
Recent WMU graduates with degrees in French are working in many different industries and types of organizations, including:
- Businesses and banks
- Charitable organizations
- Education, all levels
- International exchange programs
- Non-governmental organizations such as the Peace Corps
- State and federal government
- Travel and tourism establishments
Sample job titles include:
- Cultural officers
- Customs and immigration officers
- English teachers in France or a Francophone country
- Foreign correspondents
- Intelligence specialists
- International bankers
- Interpreters or translators
- Language teachers
- Museum curators