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German and Russian


Immerse yourself in another culture and prepare for an interesting and interconnected future.

Germany is Europe’s dominant nation in terms of economic power and population, while Russia, the world’s largest country spanning Europe and Asia, has reemerged as a world power. Millions of German and Russian speakers live all around the world, including here in Salem. As a student of German or Russian, you’ll gain language skills and cultural awareness that are highly valued in today’s increasingly international world.

A spirit of collaboration lies at the heart of our small, dynamic program. You’ll work closely with your classmates and professors to improve your language skills — not just in class, but at German- or Russian-speaking lunch tables, movie nights and cultural events. You’ll also have a chance to participate in community service projects and contribute to our collective body of knowledge as an independent researcher.

By taking classes in literature, art, film, philosophy, history and politics, you’ll develop a broad cultural understanding. And by taking advantage of study abroad opportunities, you’ll deepen your knowledge of the language and its native speakers. Options include ISEP Austria, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, and ISEP Switzerland, St. Petersburg, Yaroslavl and Irkutsk and Russia.

When you graduate, your cultural knowledge, research skills and language fluency will lead to career opportunities in diverse fields, including government, translation, foreign service, journalism, tourism, business, technology, education, law, and service with various NGOs and nonprofits.

Featured Alumni

German & Russian

Diana Serrano ’10

  • Secondary English learner who was raised in rural Mexico and Woodburn, Oregon
  • Earned an M.A. from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey in California, then a PhD at Brandeis University in Massachusetts.
  • Became a Strategic Data Project fellow through Harvard University in 2019
Tejeswara Reddy
German & Russian

Tejeswara Reddy '15

  • Taught English in Greece through the Fulbright U.S. Student program
  • Former high school math teacher and U.S Department of Education Policy Fellow
  • Studied genetically modified crops in India as a Willamette Carson Scholar and oversaw a group of volunteers who worked with Chicago’s homeless population through Take A Break
German & Russian

Eric Swinn ’06

  • First-generation student from Roseburg, Oregon
  • Double major in French and Russian who seized opportunities for study abroad and learning from his professors
  • Now deputy chief of consular affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Brussels
Willamette University

German and Russian Department

Willamette University
900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.
503-370-6253 voice
503-370-6720 fax