Skip to Main Content
Salisbury University BW
A Maryland University of National Distinction
navigation icon opens header SALISBURY UNIVERSITY

Career Services Students
mobile menu icon


Page Index: French

Academic Information: -  top

What is French?  top

French is a Romance language spoken throughout the world by more than 260 million people, making it the 5th most-spoken language, and the 3rd most-spoken of the Romance languages, behind Portuguese and Spanish. It has at times been considered the “language of the world”, though in recent years English has in some ways superseded this role. French is an official language in Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Canada, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea, Luxemburg, Madagascar, Mali, Monaco, Niger, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Switzerland, Togo, and Vanuatu. It is also widely spoken in many of France’s old territorial holdings, including Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam.

Career Information  -  top

Possible/Typical Job Titles  - top

Foreign languages help prepare you to work in many types of jobs. For example, you may want to major in a particular foreign language and become certified to teach. This would enable you to take a job either teaching that foreign language, teaching English as a foreign language, or teaching in a bilingual setting. Combining languages with the study of business can help prepare the student for jobs in foreign commerce, including banking, marketing, import-export, purchasing, finance, advertising, consulting, etc. Included among the numerous professions in which a knowledge of foreign languages can be helpful are the following: government service, social work, architecture, engineering, journalism, public relations, library service, archaeology, philosophy, medicine, the travel industry, telecommunications, music, theater, and research scholarship.


  • Economist
  • Insurance adjuster
  • Technical writer, corporate publications
  • International marketing analyst
  • District sales manager
  • Staff human relations training coordinator
  • Management consultant
  • Customer support specialist
  • Patent attorney*
  • Technical translator
  • Overseas representative
  • Travel planner
  • Bank administrator
  • Hotel manager

Government/Public Sector

  • Volunteer recruiter, Peace Corps
  • Social science analyst*
  • International education specialist,
  • Agency for International Development
  • Securities examiner*
  • Criminologist
  • Mediator trainee
  • Translator/interpreter
  • Customs inspector
  • Import specialist
  • International relations officer,
  • Commerce Department
  • National Security Agency linguist/analyst
  • Foreign Service officer, Department of State

Health/Human Services

  • Director, health and human resources
  • International health care systems analyst*
  • Counseling psychologist*
  • Psychiatrist*
  • Physician*
  • Cataloger
  • Laboratory technician
  • Science information research specialist*
  • Director, international airport visitors center
  • Youth program leader
  • Bioengineer*


  • Exchange student
  • Conservator
  • Teacher
  • Professor*
  • Librarian*
  • Guidance counselor*
  • Intellectual properties attorney*
  • Coordinator, cultural arts center
  • Publisher, foreign language books
  • Foreign film distributor*
  • Guidebook writer
  • Abstractor
  • Editor of foreign publications


  • Announcer (radio, TV)
  • Booking agent
  • Road manager
  • International Trade economist
  • Translator, computer
  • Immigration inspector
  • Intelligence specialist
  • Tour guide
  • Foreign language translator
  • Special agent/FBI
  • Training instructor
  • Foreign information officer
  • Foreign tax accountant
  • Employment interviewer
  • Language researcher
  • Interpreter
  • Anthropologist
  • Customs inspector
  • International broadcaster
  • Case worker
  • Writer/technical publications
  • News writer/foreign languages
  • International Relations spec.
  • Interviewer & claims adjuster
  • Foreign exch. program dir.
  • Community organization worker
  • Manager, Industrial development
  • Teacher/second language,
  • Flight attendant
  • Foreign student advisor

*Denotes additional education required

Typical Places of Employment  -  top

  • Airports
  • Government agencies
  • Public relations firms
  • Federal Trade Commission
  • Hotel chains
  • Consumer Affairs Office
  • Chambers of commerce
  • Vista
  • Investment firms
  • Foreign Service Dept.
  • United Nations
  • Fed. Communications
  • Air, bus, and rail lines
  • Peace Corps
  • News bureaus
  • Commerce Dept.
  • Visitors & convention bureaus
  • National Archives
  • Public service organizations
  • Agency of International Dvpmt.
  • Import/export companies
  • Education Dept.
  • Travel agencies
  • Civil Service Commission
  • Advertising dept. & agencies
  • Immigration & Nat. service
  • Banks/savings & commercialLibrary of Congress

Required Skills and Abilities -  top

  • Teaching, explaining
  • Enlightening, guiding
  • Helping
  • Summarizing ideas
    • Compiling/recording data
    • Evaluating results
    • Collaborating as part of a team
    • Determining the needs of others
    • Acknowledging value systems
    • Listening carefully
    • Interviewing non-judgmentally
    • Designing instruments
    • Reporting and editing
    • Establishing hypotheses
    • Reading for content and structure
    • Working with research subjects
    • Communicating between cultures
    • Understanding cultural diversity
    • Assessing needs
  • Selecting & training
  • Informing, organizing
  • Solving problems, leading discussions
  • Speaking to groups
    • Reading/writing another language
    • Clarifying ideas
    • Writing clearly
    • Understanding historical language change
    • Explaining complex concepts
    • Reading critically
    • Interpreting data
    • Evaluating information
    • Evaluating evidence
    • Comparing translations interpretations
    • Gathering information
    • Working with original sources in many fields
    • Organizing materials/information
    • Adapting to other cultures
    • Weighing values

Alumni Resources  -  top

(Listed below are examples of SU Alumni and their Jobs in this major-For more alumni resources, go to Mentor Network)





Amanda Baker May 2006 Supreme Court of the United States Federal Police Officer
Andrew W. Hanson May 2003 Osprey Property Company Developement Manager
John Heath May 2005 KPMG LLP Senior Associate- IT Auditor

Related Links: Further Explore this Career Field - top

Professional Associations:

Foreign Language Associations (links to associations)

American Translators Association

Modern Language Association

American Association for Applied Linguistics

American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages

Other Career-Related Links:

French Companies with a U.S. Presence
    Accor (hotels)
    Air France
    Air Liquide
    BNP Paribas (bank)
    Crédit Agricole (bank)
    Thomson, Inc. (RCA, General Electric)

American Companies with a Presence in France
    Bank of America
    Caterpillar (Construction)
    Cargill International
    Covance (Biotech/Pharmaceutical)
    Exxon Mobil Corporation
    Hewlett Packard
    Johnson & Johnson
    JP Morgan Chase

Need help or have questions about this page? Please visit our Ask a Question or Report a Problem page.
Salisbury University 1101 Camden Avenue Salisbury, MD 21801 410-543-6000