Students are already declaring as a Languages and Intercultural Studies (LIS) major. The new major has two available concentrations: Hispanic and Multiple Language Studies.
The Multiple Language concentration covers languages other than Spanish. Languages the university offers include Russian, German, Italian, French and Spanish. Department Chair Gary Schmidt is excited about this new development.
“We aren’t yet there as an institution where we can offer full fledge majors in every language available,” said Schmidt. “However, we should be allowing students to gain the maximum experience with a language and culture possible, and the Multiple Language option allows us to do that for every language other than Spanish.”
Students should have proficient language skills in the areas of reading, writing, speaking and listening by the time they graduate.
“It’s a lifelong process,” said Schmidt. “So, we want to establish the foundation for students to continue to learn and continue to become more proficient, but we also want to push them, and push ourselves, to get the maximum results out of their studies while at Coastal.”
There are three faculty-led study abroad opportunities for students in the May semester. Depending on the rotation, students can travel to either Costa Rica or Spain, and a new program is beginning this May called Coastal in Berlin. While there, students can also complete their core language requirement, or advance course work.
The new major encourages students to double major or declare a minor. For those that do, the cognitive requirements of the LIS major will be waived.
Mauricio Castillo is an assistant professor within the department. He believes that the multi-disciplinary aspect of the major will entice students to join.
“In my course, they will have different projects they can do” said Castillo. “The final project is going to be based on their own interests. Maybe they can do something about history, economics, business; I can work with them on a project that will serve them for their other major.”
Learning another language expands job opportunities and helps one appreciate their own culture, according to Castillo.
“You cannot expect everyone in the world to speak English,” said Castillo.
For more information on the major requirements, click here.