Learning another language will take you farther than any sort of college degree might. Here’s a list of reasons why it’s even better than a master’s:
1. It opens the door for more jobs.
Whenever I look at job openings, a lot of them now want people that know more than one language. With how connected we all are, we have to know more than English. Knowing another language is more valuable than getting another degree for the heck of it. Plus, knowing a language is more intelligent than some of the degrees out there! Knowing another language can land you a job anywhere in the world, and how exciting is that?!
2. The world is beyond billingual—it’s trilingual, quadrilingual, and more.
The US may be the only country in the world that doesn’t heavily stress taking another language seriously. We’ve never really had to. Only now has it grown to be important. But everywhere else in the world, mastering more than two languages is common. Most people know at least two, if not three. It’s embarrassing when Americans travel and ask everyone if they speak English, just like how we get offended when that happens in our own country. We are the last country in the world to recognize that a language is the most important thing to learn—and people are laughing at us for it!
3. It creates a stronger experience when you travel.
If you ever decide to travel to a foreign country, knowing the language will make the experience so much more richer. Being able to communicate with the people that live there rather than having to guess at what people are saying is an amazing thing to experience. It will also make you more approachable when abroad and more inviting towards those in the country you are visiting. No one likes a tourist who can only speak their native language.
4. It starts a conversation.
There is nothing more interesting than a person who can speak more than one language. It’s fun to listen to and mesmerizing to see. People will want to know more about you, why you chose that language, and what you want to do with it. This is particularly helpful during interviews because people will find your language skills way more intriguing than the weird internship you had in college. If you can speak another language, you can capture the attention of others.
5. You can make more friends abroad.
It’s really hard to make friends outside of the country if you can’t speak their language. And there is nothing more awesome than having friends outside of the country. If you can speak their language, you’ll have someone to practice with and someone to visit! Why not try to learn something new that might make you friends all over the world?
6. It’s impressive.
Learning a language isn’t easy. We all know that. I know that I really struggle with it, but I understand why it’s important to be able to talk to others. Though, I find that people are more impressed with knowing that I am trying to learn to speak languages rather than whatever else I am doing. And if you can tackle and language, you can tackle anything.
So get your learning cap on and get speaking! No matter what language you try to learn, even taking the time to learn it is worthwhile. You don’t have to be good at learning it. Heck, I’ve been in Beginning Mandarin one for over a year. But you do have to realize that the world is changing and we need to be able to communicate with each other.