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Why Study Spanish?

Seven reasons to study Spanish at Northwestern

Study at home…and abroad! Spanish Program at Northwestern offers exciting classes in Spanish language, literature and culture. Almost 85 percent of our majors and minors study abroad in programs all over Spain and Latin America.

Spanish is the second most used language in the United States, spoken at home by more than 30 million people. There are almost one million Spanish speakers in Chicago alone!

Spanish is spoken around the world, by more than 400 million speakers on 4 continents and in 21 countries. It is one of the six official languages of the United Nations, and one of the official languages of the European Union.

There have been 11 Spanish language Nobel Prize winners in Literature, including Mario Vargas Llosa (Peru), Octavio Paz (Mexico), Gabriel García Márquez (Colombia), Pablo Neruda (Chile), Miguel Ángel Asturias (Guatemala), and Juan Ramón Jiménez (Spain).

Lyrics to tango, salsa, merengue, bachata, reggaetón, and bolero songs are all sung in Spanish.

Goooooooooaaaaal! Spanish is the language of sports!  Spain, Argentina and Uruguay have all won the World Cup in Soccer.  About 27 percent of the players in U.S. Major League Baseball hail from a Spanish-speaking country, including many from the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Cuba and Puerto Rico.

Spanish is a language of business: Spanish is spoken in fast-growing world economies such as Argentina and Mexico.  Here in the U.S., Latino consumers have been declared the fastest growing market segment. The Spanish-language television network Univisión is the fifth largest network in the country.