Maybe the Spanish language is part of your heritage, or maybe you just loved the courses you took in high school. Now you’re seeking mastery of the language, broad exposure to its rich literatures, and knowledge of Spanish-speaking cultures. At UMW, you’ll challenge yourself with compelling coursework, aided by our language labs and access to computer tutorials. In conjunction with UMW’s strong liberal arts program, you’ll prepare yourself for a variety of international careers.
Students majoring in Spanish who complete all requirements earn the degree of Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Modern Foreign Languages.
Graduates in Spanish have pursued careers in interpreting, translating, research, social services, education, government agencies, the tourism industry, the Peace Corps, and international business. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the demand for interpreters and translators will increase by more than 46 percent between 2012 and 2022, making this field one of the fastest-growing occupations.
For-credit internships may be available to junior and senior Spanish majors. UMW Spanish majors have found internships in Washington, D.C., and with local agencies including Rappahannock Adult Education Programs, the Virginia Department of Health, Hugh Mercer Elementary School, Rappahannock Council Against Sexual Assault, Bragg Hill Family Life Center, Moss Free Clinic, and Rappahannock Legal Services. You may also complete an internship, volunteer, or participate in service learning in Spain or Latin America.
My Spanish degree, plus working as a Peace Corps Volunteer in El Salvador, set me up later to pursue an MA in Latin American Studies, then join the US Department of State as a Foreign Service Officer. I’ve now served in Colombia, Mexico, and currently Brazil, where learning Portuguese was a snap after my Mary Washington Spanish background. But the broader liberal arts education I got at Mary Wash prepared me for plenty of other adventures and challenges: I’ve also worked in China, Iraq, and Uganda, but was not out of my depths. Mary Washington helped make me a flexible and well-rounded person, and it all began in the Spanish program.Brian Straight. B.A. Spanish ’99
Students who have at least a 3.5 grade-point average in the Spanish major and a 3.0 GPA overall by the beginning of senior year can apply to complete and defend a research-based thesis for departmental honors. An undergraduate research grant, awarded through the Office of Academic Affairs, may be available for travel and other thesis-related expenses.
The Spanish major requires 13 courses totaling 39 credits in language, literature, linguistics, and culture courses, plus a required experiential component.
A minor in Spanish requires 24 to 27 credits of Spanish classes.
A minor in business Spanish requires a total of 27 credits.