Modern Languages and Literatures - From Classroom to Career Junior Year
Options After Fairfield
How can you best use your remaining courses and free electives to both round out your education and prepare for a career? How about possible graduate school work in MLL... or scholarships like a Fulbright Fellowship... or Teach for America? Talk to your advisor.
Talk to favorite professors about possible supervised research projects you might do in your area of interest, in the summer or during the school year. On-campus summer housing might be available.
MLL internships have many objectives. They provide practical experience through a variety of management/supervisory learning opportunities. You can apply learned concepts and language skills in a professional setting. You can gain understanding of struggles for social justice within specific cultural and economic contexts. They provide opportunities for reflection and social engagement. You can engage with government, non-profit and private sector entities on behalf of the Department of Modern languages and the University. MLL students have recently interned in the Fairfield and New York City areas at the International Institute of Connecticut, Bridgeport, CT (Spanish and French); Quick Start Language Center, Bridgeport (Spanish); The International Center for Transitional Justice, New York, NY(French); and the Italian Cultural Institute, New York, NY (Italian).
Abroad, MLL students have worked at the New Haven-Leon Sister City Project, Leon, Nicaragua (Spanish); Universidad Centroamericana, Managua, Nicaragua(Spanish); in the Teaching Assistant Program in France (French); at the International Center for Transitional Justice, Brussels and Geneva (French); and in various locations in Florence, Italy (Italian).
Talk to your faculty advisor about the two internships for credit that are allowed at Fairfield. Remember that summer jobs, not for credit, can be just as useful in gaining experience and building a resume.
Time to step up and become a leader in the various language clubs. Talk to the department chair for details.
Interested in a research area but there is no course offered in the catalog? Talk to a faculty member or department chair about a possible independent study.
MLL has department awards for outstanding students every spring; they are honored at the College of Arts and Sciences award night in April. Attend the event and look for projects that might earn you this honor. With your faculty advisor, gain experience in entering such a competition and learn how to effectively package and present your work-and yourself. Non-seniors are often singled out for their great work.
Look for three professors, in and out of the department, who can speak about your successes in an informed way. Jobs Board and Internship Board.
Most jobs are filled before the company even puts out a notice, as most hires are from an internal referral in the company. These hires have huge advantages over the general population. Many companies that use websites such as Monster are looking to fill positions for a job that has a high rate of burn-out among employees, like sales. Networking, therefore, is the most crucial aspect to a successful employment search. Internships, academic clubs and volunteer work will result in more contacts in different fields.
- Chris Zeitz '04; Philosophy; US Army (2007-2012)
Alpha Mu Gamma, the National Foreign Language Honorary Society, was founded in 1931 with the purposes of recognizing students' achievement in the field of foreign language study; stimulating a desire for linguistic achievement; encouraging a continuing interest in the study of foreign languages, literature and civilizations; and fostering sympathetic understanding of other peoples and international friendship. Alpha Mu Gamma is the official sponsor of National Foreign Language Week. More than 350 charters have been granted to chapters in the United States and Puerto Rico. Chapters are found both in state and private universities and in public and private colleges.
The Eta Pi Chapter at Fairfield University was established by Fr. Victor Leeber in 1970 and currently it is the largest and most active group in the society, nationwide. Our chapter has hosted two successful national conventions (2001 and 2009) and student members have also attended conventions and given presentations at other universities. Since 2008 several Fairfield University AMG members have been among the recipients of the three major national scholarships that Alpha Mu Gamma awards annually. For further information, please visit the Fairfield University Chapter of Alpha Mu Gamma website.
Life After Fairfield
With the broad liberal education that all Fairfield students acquire, plus command of a foreign language, modern language majors have launched their careers in a wide range of organizations and enterprises. International corporations headquartered in New York City and Fairfield County have sought out recent graduates who are familiar with a European or Asian language and culture.
Banks, airlines, investment companies, and travel agencies are among the employers of recent graduates. Some alumni have gone into secondary teaching or have opted for work with social service agencies. Others have gone on to graduate or professional study, such as business and law schools, and various Ph.D. programs. A number of language majors have received Fulbright grants to teach or conduct research overseas. Talk to your faculty advisor and professors now about how to act now and prepare for your chosen career path.
That's just the start. Take a look at this career information from other University offices that we think is also valuable to Modern Languages and Literatures majors.