With ever increasing demand of multilingual trade and business transactions, learning a new language can be both exciting as a career option and can open more options for your career
“One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way”.
These beautiful lines by Frank Smith have a lot to say in the real world as people knowing more than one language definitely have an edge over others. Now the question arises why learn another language when most people are familiar with English. It’s true that more and more people are learning and speaking English. It is noted that 1.5 billion around the world speak English, whether as their native tongue or as a foreign language, and this number is still growing. But why limit yourself? What about the other 5.6 billion people who don’t speak English at all?
With ever-increasing levels of international trade and business, immigration, tourism and random cross-cultural experiences, there are chances you will eventually find yourself face-to-face with someone who doesn’t speak English, at least not up to a level you understand.
We live in a multilingual world that is becoming increasing globalized and it is therefore important to know more than one language. There are various reasons for this, an additional language can help you progress in your career, you gain awareness of other cultures, and most importantly helps increase our understanding and knowledge of the language we already know.
Learning a new language will help you in preparation for your college and graduate schools away from your country. Being able to speak foreign languages- especially in demand languages like French, German or Mandarin looks good on such application. Many undergraduate programs and even some postgraduate courses have foreign language courses as part of their graduation requirements.
But it’s not just wholly about your resume. With globalization, there’s a good chance you’ll be working with people who don’t speak English. Maybe it’s a development team in India, or a manufacturing plant in China; being able to communicate in other languages gives you an edge over other employers.
I am pretty sure all of you might be wondering that all that has been said till now is that of any use, let me tell you that Indian companies are emerging as global players it is the need of the hour to be well equipped and be at par with the multinational and international players. We need to break the language barrier and be able to facilitate a smooth conversation in order to let proper business connections flow.
In order to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in any foreign language the candidate must have cleared the higher secondary school certificate or 10+2 from a recognized board. The duration of the bachelor’s course is mostly three years. One can pursue a B.A. course or a diploma/certificate course (varies from one to two years). In order to pursue a Master’s degree in any foreign language the candidates needs to have completed his/ her graduation in a relevant stream (Same language). Usually the duration of the course is two years.
Institutes that offer foreign language courses are a lot in India, some of the most renowned ones are:
- School of Languages, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi
- University of Delhi, New Delhi
- Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Jawaharlal Nehru Academy of Languages, New Delhi
- Japanese Information and Cultural Centre, New Delhi
- Ram Krishna Mission, Kolkata
- Alliance Francasie
- Rajasthan University, Jaipur
- Max Mueller Bhavan in Mumbai, Kolkata, New Delhi and Chennai
- Pune University, Pune
- Central Institute of English and Foreign Languages, Hyderabad
- Indo Italian Chamber of Commerce, Mumbai
- Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi
If you’ve got some money to spare and (/or) if you want to learn the language from the pros, then there’s no place better than the respective embassies. Almost all the embassies run courses (long and short term) of their languages, and they welcome everyone who has completed a basic level of education. However, the best thing about these places is that they also design courses for you provided you come in a group of 5 and soembassies are present almost in all the metropolitan cities of the country.
Academic qualification and proficiency in a foreign language can open the gates for career in sectors such as tourism, embassies, diplomatic service, entertainment, public relations and mass communication, international organizations, publishing, interpretation and translation, etc.
On being able to learn a language and have acquired fluency in the same, the person can think of becoming an interpreter, foreign language expert and translators.
Overall there can be no denying that learning new languages is wholly positive for individuals, don’t try and be a polyglot, learn a new language or two, explore yourself and take your life to a new level.
Picture Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Published with permission from the author