Compatible Majors/minors with an East Asian Foreign Languages interest

<p>Hi, I am a high school student starting my preparation for my education at the university level. I start the application process this upcoming fall and would like to gain some useful and encouraging information that will help ease the burden of defining what I want to do with my life.</p>

<p>I suppose it should be noted that I am enrolled in a Florida public school that offers no courses in this field and that my ideal preferences for attending university are the University of Florida or Florida State University (as they are the only schools in Florida, that I gather from my research, that offer such majors).</p>

<p>I am a non-native speaker, however, I am Chinese.</p>

<p>In doing research on this website i found that many people have said that Chinese-Mandarin is a more lucrative and useful language to study rather than Japanese which is causing my primary interest to shift from Japanese to Chinese</p>

<p>My Questions:
In pursuing a degree in an east asian foreign language, is it required that i have an prior knowledge?</p>

<p>What are some typical and useful combinations of majors/minors that would compliment a east asian foregin language major?</p>

<p>With these combinations, what are some ideal careers that I could consider coming out of university with a bachelor's or master's degree?</p>

<p>Are such language programs as Rosetta Stone, worth the price? Are they really successful in establishing a firm foundation or mastery of that language?</p>

<p>Don't shift your interest on the supposed basis that Chinese is more useful/lucrative. What language is most useful to you on depends whether your interest lies in Japan or in a Chinese-speaking country. Yes, Chinese currently has some economic and political importance given the rise of China, but Japan is still importance as is Korea. Knowing a language in and of itself is not necessarily increase your prospects foran economic return or employability. You must know it proficiently and combine it with other studies that enhance employment prospects.</p>

<p>You don't need prior knowledge, but be aware that proficiency requires several years of study, including study in a country where the language is spoken.</p>

<p>Language study could complement a number of fields, e.g., economics, international relations, business. If you planned to do graduate study in an area focused on China or Japan, it obviously would be required as a language of scholarship/research tool, e.g., Asian Art History, but I don't think that's what you have in mind. You might look at a interdisciplinary major in East Asian Studies, though I think its usually best to get a solid grounding in a traditional discipline, e.g., economics.</p>

<p>I see your point zapfino.</p>

<p>Even though my heritage is Chinese, I feel like I would enjoy the Japanese culture and lifestyle more. My original intent was for me to learn Japanese so that i could find myself living in Japan one day.</p>

<p>From your personal experience, do you believe that having such a strong interest in a culture and its language is more than satisfactory enough to outweigh something that compliments it yet you feel little interest for, like international relations or economics?</p>

<p>Realistically, having a strong interest in a culture and its language still does not resolve the question of how to make a living, does it? That's where the complimentary field helps out.
Of course, you might never do well in a particular complementary field if it holds little or no interest for you. </p>

<p>Like any liberal arts major, a major in an East Asian language offers the same types of skills---writing & speaking, cultural analysis and cross-cultural awareness, etc. While these are useful skills in a number of contexts, you still have to find someone to employ you, unless you find a way to become self-employed. It would be a plus if that employed endeavor utilizes your language skills.</p>

<p>I have a family member who has lived and worked (for private and governmental agencies) in several Asia countries for many years. He speaks Indonesian fluently, and has conversational abilities in Thai and Vietnamese. Obviously, his language and cultural understanding help him tremendously in his work. Nonetheless, he also has a PhD in Politics (specialty SE Asia), nearly the equivalent of a doctorate in economics, and a law degree. It is those other fields that provide his employment---teaching economics and law, consulting with US, foreign, and international agencies, working for a law firm, etc. He tells me that there are many peole with equal or better qualifications working in Asia---not only Americans, but Australians, Germans, Brits, etc.</p>

<p>I have a friend who is an immigration attorney. She is fluent in Japanese and very well-versed in Japanese culture. Clearly, her language skills help her in her work with Japanese businessmen straightening out their visa problems, etc., but it the law degree that got her the job.</p>

<p>So think about how you want to use your degree and how you might use it to earn a living.</p>

<p>I haven't really looked into it, but I've heard there are jobs teaching English in Japan and know people who have done this, but there is some competition for these jobs and the pay isn't always great. However, it has enabled some people to live in Japan for a time. You might consider a certificate program in Teaching English as a Second Language to suplement your Japanese Studies.</p>

<p>A while back I saw this article about recent American grads who went to China to find jobs and learned Chinese in the process. I think they're probably the exception, though.</p>

<p><a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/11/business/economy/11expats.html?_r=1%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/11/business/economy/11expats.html?_r=1&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>If you decide to go with Chinese check out the Chinese Flagship programs.
The</a> Language Flagship - Chinese</p>

<p>There may be some funding for students who get accepted in these programs. Itis geared to proficiency level and is taken as a major along with a major in another field.</p>

<p>Very informative, thank you zapfino. I'll look into the points you talked about</p>