posted April 6, 2010

Address on Career Benefits of Even Basic Foreign Language Understanding

The French Cultural Studies Colloquium at Hope College will conclude its year with the presentation "The Accidental Globalist:  A discussion of the significant career benefits provided by even a basic understanding of a foreign language" on Monday, April 19, at 4 p.m. in the Fried-Hemenway Auditorium of the Martha Miller Center for Global Communication.

The campus community is invited.  Admission is free.

The speaker will be Duncan M. MacLean, who is director of global planning and launch systems with Johnson Controls Inc. in Holland.  The abstract notes:

"Many people have considered pursuing fluency in a foreign language to enhance their résumé's appeal to global companies.  Fluency clearly opens the door to expatriate assignments that accelerate one's career and add excitement to the future, but what about 'knowledge of French' as a career facilitator?  How does reading 'Candide' help a businessman cultivate his professional garden?

"In this presentation we will explore how just four semesters of college French changed the way one IT guy at a global company approaches his work each day, even though his first trip to France was 24 years after his last French class!   What does the 'Little Prince' have to do with coordinating team meetings with people from China, Korea, Singapore, Japan, India, Italy, Germany, England and France?  More than you might think.

The Martha Miller Center for Global Communication is located at 257 Columbia Ave., on Columbia Avenue at 10th Street.  Refreshments will be served during the event.