Perhaps you’ve already fallen in love with the poems of Pablo Neruda and the novels of Gabriel García Márquez and realized that you want a deeper look into the culture and language in which these writers flourish. Or maybe you’ve got a businesslike mind and see a lot of potential in the developing economies of South America. Regardless of what your interest may be, a Spanish major will provide you a unique insight into the second most widely spoken language in the world. Spoken throughout Central and South America, Spain, and many parts of the United States, knowledge of Spanish is a bridge into varied cultures that span several continents and dozens of centuries. In addition to becoming fluent in the language, a Spanish major also obtains a broad knowledge of the history of the Spanish-speaking world. From Aztecs ruins to Argentine fascism, you’ll delve into the social, political, and economic elements that have made Spanish one of the most important languages in the world. Many colleges recommend or require that you spend at least a semester studying in a Spanish-speaking country of your choice.
Most high schools offer Spanish as an elective, and even if you don’t decide to major in it, getting as deeply as you can into the language will help you pass the general education requirements in a foreign language that many colleges now have. So take it from your freshman year until you graduate. Geography and history are also useful, as Spanish has been spoken all over the world for many centuries. If you’re lucky enough to find a linguistics class, take that, too.