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Message from the Chair

Why study . . .


German continues to be fundamental to the liberal arts. Not only the language of philosophy, literature and science, today it is also advantageous in business, communications, international relations and technology. German is the second most widely spoken language in Europe, and Germany is the financial and economic powerhouse of the European Union (and America’s largest European trade partner!). A nation of travelers, Germans spend $37 billion annually world wide.

South Carolina boasts over 170 German companies, while close to 700 German businesses have operations in the Southeastern United States. Most of these companies offer higher salaries to employees with German language skills.

The German program at the College of Charleston was recognized as the best undergraduate German program in South Carolina by the SC Commission on Higher Education.


Russian has become one of the most heard languages in Europe today. Russian is the most used Slavic language in the world with over 280 million speakers (native and non-native) and Russia is the world’s largest country (with eleven time zones!).

The language of Pushkin, Eisenstein, Lenin and Gorbachev has recently been recognized by the US State Department as a critical language. Since the end of the Cold War, the number of people in the US who study Russian has declined, and yet more and more businesses (Exxon Mobile, Microsoft, Price Waterhouse), law firms, government agencies (State Department, Department of Commerce, NASA) and consulting firms (aeronautics, engineering, foreign policy) are finding that they need employees with a thorough knowledge and understanding of Russian language and culture.

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