Jun 19, 2024  
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

World Languages and Cultures

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Chairpersons: Maria Rosaria Vitti-Alexander, Ph.D.; Professors:  Chacón, Ph.D., LeBreton, Ph.D., Vitti-Alexander, Ph.D.; Associate Professors: Yu, Ph.D.; Adjuncts: Samudio, M.A., Naulleau, M.A.

In compliance with the College Mission Statement, the department of world languages and cultures:

  • provides an undergraduate curriculum in world languages and cultures that challenges students to high academic achievement;
  • advances in students the intellectual development necessary for critical thinking, aesthetic understanding, effective communication, and life-long learning;
  • provides a broad cultural understanding and appreciation through the presentation of a wide variety of cultures;
  • embraces diversity, and welcomes and respects the intellectual freedom of each individual.
  • Also, in harmony with the College Academic Vision Statement, the department of world languages and cultures meets the three fundamental requirements: exceptional teaching, off-campus learning education, and promotion of a more inclusive community.

The missions of the department of world languages and cultures are:

  • the study of another language to develop intercultural sensitivity to and knowledge of different modes of perceiving reality;
  • the study of a foreign language for task-specific purposes, such as everyday communicative competence (speaking, understanding, reading, writing), in a particular discipline;
  • preparation for graduate study in literature, linguistics, or a professional program;
  • the acquisition of formal knowledge and literacy in one’s home language and culture.

The general purpose of the major program is to educate students to think and perceive rationally and critically. This will include reading and thinking, learning about literary and cultural movements, and making connections between the primarily aesthetic literary artifacts of the culture and its political, social, and economic history.

Through the Emerson Foreign Language Laboratory, students are trained to use new learning and technology media at all language levels to allow them to communicate effectively in the world. Likewise, they are encouraged to prepare themselves philosophically and practically to make linkages between the major and other academic disciplines.

The student majoring in a foreign language will learn about the world of ideas and letters, past and present. This training requires formal study abroad. The cohesive, integrated program of foreign language, culture, and literature courses ensures maximum proficiency in the target language.

Major programs are available in Chinese, French, Italian, and Spanish. A student may elect either a major in one foreign language or a modern foreign languages major, i.e., the study of two languages. Students majoring in a foreign language are required to spend at least a semester in a locale where the language they are studying is the native tongue. However, all language majors are strongly encouraged to spend one entire year abroad.

The department offers minors in Chinese, French, German, Italian, and Spanish to accompany any major in a given discipline. The department also offers courses in Arabic. Courses may be taken at other colleges in the Rochester Area Colleges consortium with the approval of the department chairperson.

The College provides the facilities of La Maison Française, Casa Hispana, Casa Italiana, the German Cultural Center, and the Chinese Cultural Center where many academic and cultural events take place throughout the year. Also in these facilities, language students have the opportunity of contact with native speakers of the target language. All resident French majors are required to spend at least two years in the Maison Française. One of these must be the year following their academic year in France to maintain fluency in the language skills acquired abroad.

Several of the students in foreign languages and literatures have earned prestigious awards, such as Fulbright awards, a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship, the German Bosch Award, and the NIAF Italian Scholarship Award.

Most graduates are professionally active in academics, industry, banking, law, marketing, teaching, and the service sector, sometimes primarily because they were educated in a foreign culture with additional training in a professional specialty (business, finance, pedagogy, social sciences). The variety of job fields to which our students have access after graduation is the natural result of a strong liberal arts education.

Overseas Education Programs: Nazareth College Study Abroad Programs
Nazareth’s Study Abroad Programs include residential programs in France, Italy, Spain, Germany and China. In many cases, students have the added benefit of living in the private homes of carefully chosen families, where they gain further proficiency in their chosen language as they experience all the benefits of a multicultural living environment. Most financial assistance is applicable to study abroad programs, and students earn valid college credits through class work and study.

Through partnership agreements with universities and the College Consortium for International Studies, Nazareth maintains a network of exchange programs around the world. This network enables students to study for a semester or a year at more than 80 universities in 30 countries on six continents. Whether learning a language, enhancing academic skills, or participating in cultural immersion, these programs help students to develop an intercultural outlook, professional contacts in international networks, and employment opportunities.

To ensure that candidates meet graduation requirements and make the best choice of courses available, they should plan their academic program in consultation with their own department advisor. Individual guidance by a resident staff member of the Nazareth College faculty is available in Rennes, Valencia, Pescara, Shandong and Berlin.

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