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French Undergraduate Program

Why choose to study French?

With over 275 million people around the world speaking French, French is the fifth most widely spoken language in the world and opens doors on all five continents.

Fields such as STEM, business, and government and politics are increasingly recognizing the importance of foreign languages as a way to prepare students to become a part of a highly mobile and global workforce. Moreover, French is one of the official languages of many international organizations: the UN, UNESCO, NATO, the EU, the Olympics; over 1,200 French companies in the United States employ 500,000 Americans; it is also required or preferred by over 50% of international jobs listed by the U.S. State Department; and Canada is the largest trading partner of the United States and Montreal is the second largest French-speaking city in the world after Paris.
Additionally, learning about the complex history and culture of France and the French-speaking world help develop a deep understanding of today’s postcolonial geopolitical dynamics while also gaining cross-cultural competency and discovering the rich literary and cinematographic tradition that exists not only in France, but across the French-speaking world.

It opens doors to exciting careers, connections, future opportunities beyond your time at University of Maryland.