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French, B.A.

Through this major, you will study the French language and its related literature, history, theology, politics, music and art. Your understanding of the world will expand as you become immersed in a language that is second in media usage worldwide and is spoken by 220 million people.

Whitworth's French major will connect you to numerous opportunities to further your learning outside of the classroom – on campus, in the local community and abroad. Upon graduation, you will be a clear communicator who is well-equipped to work in intercultural settings with diverse communities, and to communicate fluently in the workplace and beyond.

Why major in French at Whitworth?

  • Build relationships with professors and peers. Small class sizes and interactive assignments create a sense of community. Professors often speak French with their students in the campus coffee shop while discussing life, faith or vocation.  
  • Choose from amazing study-abroad opportunities. Studying abroad will help you grow exponentially in your language proficiency, gain self-confidence and intercultural competence, and refine your personal and career goals.
  • Develop transferable skills that will benefit you in any career. The French major will help you become a strong and adaptive communicator and thinker who can identify problems, find creative solutions and make culturally informed decisions.
  • Connect your faith or worldview to your studies. Throughout your coursework, you will study diverse perspectives on faith and learn how to speak in French about your own views.
  • Collaborate with faculty and develop leadership capabilities as a teaching assistant, language tutor or research project assistant.
  • Learn language acquisition skills that can be applied to other areas. Students studying another language often find that their English improves as well, and students who continue on to medical or law school report feeling better prepared to learn specialized terminology.
  • Become who you're meant to be.

Our French grads make a difference (and get jobs)

Graduates can use their communication and intercultural skills in any profession, but they are often especially attracted to fields in which they can serve as points of contact between communities. These fields include business, education, social work, medicine, public policy, ministry and missions, government, nonprofit work and law.

Recent job placements include:

  • Benjamin Jones, international relations officer and English instructor, ITECH Lyon, Lyon, France
  • Jonathan Whitmore, operations & talent acquisition manager, PRIDE Prep school, Spokane
  • Julia Bovee, technical recruiter, Google, Seattle
  • Bradley Hoine, global product manager, Expedia, Seattle
  • Monika Cetnarowski, director of business development, 2nd Sight BioScience, Spokane
  • Lauren Noonan, senior recreation specialist, Cosumnes CSD Parks & Recreation, Elk Grove, Calif.

Our recent French grads further their studies in top graduate programs at institutions including:

  • University of Washington
  • Jean Moulin University Lyon III
  • University of Paris-Saclay
  • University of Glasgow
  • University of Colorado Boulder

Opportunities outside the classroom

  • Practice your French during round-table conversations over lunch, often with native speakers, through the Table Francais program.
  • Participate in the department’s fun annual events including international dance instruction and a soccer tournament.
  • Engage in service-learning in the Spokane community by working with organizations like World Relief or by tutoring local youth.
  • Collaborate with faculty on research and present your findings at conferences.
  • Join student organizations such as the International Club.

Pack your bags!

You will have exciting opportunities to study abroad through faculty-led programs or international exchange programs.  

Through Whitworth's long-running France Study Program, you can spend a spring semester in France with Whitworth professors and peers. You'll study France's rich history, art and language while visiting significant sites across the country. Travel from Toulouse to the Normandy beaches and the great abbey of Mont Saint-Michel; from the monuments and museums of Paris to the cathedral of Chartres; and from the Alsatian border with Germany to Nice and the French Riviera. Along the way, you will gain linguistic skills, intercultural competence and lifelong friends – both among your peers and host families.

Tracks

French majors choose from two tracks: French & Francophone studies or French education. The education track meets Washington state endorsement requirements for teaching French.

Ask our faculty

Jenny Brown

Ask Jennifer

Professor Jennifer Stafford Brown specializes in 20th-century French literature and culture. She teaches courses on Francophone African and New World literature, French women writers, the history of cinema, and French detective fiction.

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