Program Overview

At Willamette, we know how important it is to be... A global citizen in today’s world... competitive on the job market... culturally sensitive and aware.

Learning a language…

  • Helps you to expand your view of the world
  • Encourages critical reflection on the relation between language and culture
  • Develops your intellect – Improves knowledge of the native language

Who speaks French?

  • About 110 million native speakers in parts of the world like France, Switzerland, Belgium, Monaco, Italy, Canada, and Northern and Western Africa
  • About 190 million second language speakers across the globe (Francophonie)
  • That’s nearly 300,000,000 people who speak French world-wide
  • Projection of 500,000,000 by 2025

Where is French spoken?

  • The official language of 29 countries world-wide
  • It is one of the official languages of
    • NATO
    • UNESCO
  • Many other international institutions (OECD, ILB, UIA, UPU) 

French in Oregon

  • Over 11,000 Oregonians speak French, most in Western Oregon
  • One of Oregon’s nearest and largest trading partners is Canada – Canada’s official languages are French and English

France in the US

  • The US was the #1 destination for French investments abroad in 2011
  • France is the 8th largest provider of goods and services in the US
  • France was the 11th largest client of US goods and services
  • More than 2,800 French companies are established in the US, providing about 550,000 jobs

French: Language of Science and Culture

  • More Nobel Prize winners in Literature than any other country (Marie Curie, Camus, Simon, Modiano)
  • Numerous artistic movements began in France (Impressionism, Dadaism, Surrealism, Existentialism, New Wave, etc.)
  • Enormous impact on the world of cooking and cuisine (Escoffier, Bocuse, …)
  • Fashion (Chanel, Dior, Yves Saint-Laurent, J-P Gaultier…)
  • France has a long history of scientific research and discovery (Descartes, Pascal, La Condamine, Lavoisier, Pasteur, Curie…)

Major/Minor in French

  • Many students who major in French plan to – Pursue graduate degrees in a number of fields – Enter the world of Fashion – Work in the field of Art (production, curator) – Go into Publishing – Work in Education
  • Many student combine their interests – Double Majoring in French allows you to be even more competitive

What are French & Francophone Studies?

  • Major: 10 credits. The new major would consist of a shift to a more inclusive approach to the French-speaking world, a multi-disciplinary methodological approach, and the inclusion of courses taught in English within the major requirements.
  • FFS is the study of – Language – History – Culture – Literature
  • Not only France, but other French-speaking parts of the world – The Americas – Northern and Western Africa – Asia and the Pacific

Study Abroad

  • Many students choose to do a summer or semester-long program abroad
    • Dept. sponsored: CUPA (Paris) or CIDEF (Angers)
    • Many other programs in francophone countries such as Belgium, Switzerland, Senegal, Marocco, and Carribeans.
    • Between 10 and 15 students go abroad every year.
  • Contact the Office of International Education if you are interested

French @ WU and in Salem

  • French Club – Open to all WU students – Food, games, community service
  • Language Learning Center
  • Alliance Française in Portland
  • Informal get-togethers of French-speakers
  • Many French restaurants in Oregon
  • Oregon vineyards

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Willamette University

French and Francophone Studies

Smullin 312
900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.

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