TU may require foreign language
When deciding on her major, junior Emily McCormick knew she wanted to be able to make herself marketable.
Though she decided on a business major, McCormick chose to add a Spanish minor so she could communicate with the Hispanic community.
In the future, some Towson students could be required to learn a foreign language.
University President Maravene Loeschke said during a speech Wednesday to the BWI Business Partnership that she would eventually like to see Towson require certain majors to become conversational in a foreign language, especially business majors.
“One of the issues we’re addressing now at Towson is the importance of a second and third language,” Loeschke said in her speech, according to the Baltimore Business Journal. “College students don’t really want to do that, and we’re going to make them do that because they are going to need it.”
McCormick said she fully supports students learning a new language.
“Knowing a foreign language in addition to having a business degree is advantageous when applying for jobs,” she said. “Not only will you have the necessary business skills employees are looking for, but you will also be able to communicate with a wider range of people.”
Loeschke said the curriculum change is many years away from being developed.
“When we look at what we want the school to be by 2020, I would say by then it might be required,” she said. “Requirement of all students is a very long discussion process on campus. It has financial implications. We’d also know the advantages that students have in certain majors when they have that second language.”
Loeschke said the idea to implement this at the University level came on the heels of the announcement by Baltimore County Public Schools Superintendent Dallas Dance that county schools will be implementing more of a foreign language curriculum in K-12 schools.
Dance’s office could not be reached for comment on the policy.
While Loeschke said it will take time to research what majors could most benefit from this requirement, some majors she is already considering are criminal justice and business.
“You’re dealing with people who are dealing with, for example, criminal justice,” Loeschke said. “We know in certain areas of the country Spanish is critical. In the business world, Japanese and Mandarin [are] becoming important.”
Loeschke said there is much more planning to be done before the initative is fully implemented.
“I feel incredibly strongly about this issue, but that doesn’t mean that the faculty and the academic side have decided on it,” she said.