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Modern Languages and Literatures

We define culture broadly to include both the academic and the everyday. Guided by creative and enthusiastic faculty committed to language immersion, students explore topics ranging from literature and film to politics to cuisine. Today, students may study francophone or Latino/a literature; tomorrow, they may learn French or Spanish “business-speak”. Cultural immersion and potential internship experience complement the student’s program of study.

Because of our close ties to Chicago’s cultural institutions, students pursue internships with organizations like the Alliance Française and the Chicago Latino Film Festival. Academic excursions to immigrant neighborhoods like Chinatown and Pilsen, allow students to meet and learn from native speakers.

We offer coursework in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, and Spanish as well as occasional courses in Italian and Portuguese. Most language majors and minors enhance their linguistic and cultural knowledge by taking advantage of the College’s numerous options to study and complete internships abroad.

Check out the Living Learning Community (LLC) associated with the MLL Department

Department News

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  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/616-abby-brand-10"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,15,173,188/27746_unknown.rev.1441133368.jpeg" alt="Abby Brand ’10" title="Abby Brand ’10" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" data-max-w="173" data-max-h="260"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “I believe any time spent abroad is incredibly important because it gives you a new frame of reference, which makes you more creative and gives you the ability to think outside of the box - skills valuable for any profession.”</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/616-abby-brand-10">Abby Brand ’10, an economics and French major, became an attorney.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2148-lisa-pattavina-15"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1758,1678/34368_lisa_pattavina3.rev.1477320507.jpg" alt="Lisa Pattavina ’15" title="Lisa Pattavina ’15" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1758,1678/34368_lisa_pattavina3.rev.1477320507.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1758,1678/34368_lisa_pattavina3.rev.1477320507.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1758" data-max-h="1678"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p class="p1"> “I cannot emphasize how supportive the Modern Languages and Literatures Department is.”</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/2148-lisa-pattavina-15">Lisa Pattavina ’15 says that being a multilingual communicator has really helped her in the job market.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/581-jonas-mikolich-11"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,335,335/27199_edited_jonas.rev.1436971926.jpg" alt="Jonas Mikolich ’11" title="Jonas Mikolich ’11" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" data-max-w="335" data-max-h="399"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> Jonas Mikolich uses his bachelor’s degree in Spanish and economics to work with the Mexico operations team at Coyote Logistics in Chicago.</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/581-jonas-mikolich-11">Read more about why he chose to double major in Spanish and economics.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2399-tuyen-tran11"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,688,2048/36651_tuyentran.rev.1490806495.jpg" alt="Tuyen Tran’11" title="Tuyen Tran’11" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,688,2048/36651_tuyentran.rev.1490806495.jpg 2x" data-max-w="688" data-max-h="2048"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “Not sure where I would be without my connections to the Forester community. Use the Career Advancement Center – I think I’ve actually contacted them more times after I graduated than while I was a student…”</p><p>  </p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/2399-tuyen-tran11">Tuyen studied International Relations, French, and Business at Lake Forest College. </a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/609-sandra-de-la-riva-15"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,124,1080,1204/27565_unknown.rev.1439929412.jpeg" alt="Sandra de la Riva ’15" title="Sandra de la Riva ’15" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,124,1080,1204/27565_unknown.rev.1439929412.jpeg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,124,1080,1204/27565_unknown.rev.1439929412.jpeg 3x" data-max-w="1080" data-max-h="1920"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> Sandra de la Riva ’15 studied abroad in France and participated in the Border Studies Program.</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/609-sandra-de-la-riva-15">Read more about this French and International Relations major.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2131-katelyn-mcauliffe-15"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,337,311/33102_katelyn_mccauliff2.rev.1472668482.jpg" alt="Katelyn McAuliffe ’15" title="Katelyn McAuliffe ’15" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" data-max-w="337" data-max-h="311"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “Success is driven by collaboration and by sharing knowledge. I work on a team – and I rely on a team – Lake Forest College helped to develop me individually so that I could be successful collectively.”</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/2131-katelyn-mcauliffe-15">Katelyn McAuliffe ’15 is now a strategic analyst in Chicago.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2100-"><img src="/live/image/gid/187/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,180,240/32682_lana_panitch.rev.1469125140.png" alt="Lana Panitch ’14" title="Lana Panitch ’14" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" data-max-w="180" data-max-h="240"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “Employers are impressed that I can speak Spanish in addition to my other hard and soft skills.” </p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/2100-">Lana Panitch ’14 became an energy efficiency expert after studying environmental studies and Spanish.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/605-patrick-nicholas-08"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,640,480/27523_photo_1.rev.1438889311.jpg" alt="Patrick Nicholas ’08" title="Patrick Nicholas ’08" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" data-max-w="640" data-max-h="480"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “When discussing the importance of Spanish in my career, opportunities to speak and read the language have been prevalent since I entered the field of finance.”</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/605-patrick-nicholas-08">Today, in his job at a major corporation, Patrick is the “go-to” person for initiating calls to Latin America.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/667-mahir-mameledzija-14"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/197,0,1446,1249/29252_image2.rev.1446742373.jpg" alt="Mahir Mameledzija ’14" title="Mahir Mameledzija ’14" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/197,0,1446,1249/29252_image2.rev.1446742373.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/197,0,1446,1249/29252_image2.rev.1446742373.jpg 3x" data-max-w="2048" data-max-h="1536"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “<em>I had an extreme passion for languages</em>. The Spanish language stood out for me because of its worldwide understanding.”</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/667-mahir-mameledzija-14">Mahir now works at the Center for the Neurobiology of Language Recovery at Northwestern.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/603-gaelle-hollandbeck-12"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/457,0,1460,1002/27563_unknown.rev.1439829791.jpeg" alt="Gaëlle Hollandbeck ’12" title="Gaëlle Hollandbeck ’12" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/457,0,1460,1002/27563_unknown.rev.1439829791.jpeg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/457,0,1460,1002/27563_unknown.rev.1439829791.jpeg 3x" data-max-w="1820" data-max-h="2046"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “The whole experience abroad in Paris was eye-opening, unforgettable, something I wouldn’t trade for anything else. Merci pour cette expérience unique et inoubliable!”</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/603-gaelle-hollandbeck-12">Read more about Gaëlle Hollandbeck ’12.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/582-matt-demaris-12"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,289,355/27200_matt_demaris.rev.1436972894.jpg" alt="Matt DeMaris ’12" title="Matt DeMaris ’12" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" data-max-w="289" data-max-h="355"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> Matt DeMaris ’12 says he wouldn’t be where he is today without his French and International Relations majors. </p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/582-matt-demaris-12">Read more about why Matt chose to major in French.</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1510-benedetta-borri-15"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,897,1261/31844_sstory_rome.benedetta2.rev.1461699247.jpg" alt="Benedetta Borri ’15" title="Benedetta Borri ’15" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,897,1261/31844_sstory_rome.benedetta2.rev.1461699247.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,897,1261/31844_sstory_rome.benedetta2.rev.1461699247.jpg 3x" data-max-w="897" data-max-h="1261"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “The College gave me not only a place to <em>cultivate my interests</em>, but the unique opportunity to <strong>travel abroad</strong>, to build n<strong>etworks of friendship overseas</strong>, and to <strong>develop a strong cultural sensitivity</strong>.”</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/1510-benedetta-borri-15">Benedetta works at the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs after studying Chinese. </a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/604-camille-lemieux-17"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,163,163/37758_c_lemieux_graduation_photo-crop2.rev.1496674797.png" alt="Camille Lemieux ’17" title="Camille Lemieux ’17" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" data-max-w="163" data-max-h="163"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> Camille Lemieux ’17 is making big strides in her career goal of becoming a language education professor at a research university.</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/604-camille-lemieux-17">Read more about what Camille is doing now</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/613-justin-lansing-07"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,640,474/27696_jl_with_banjo.rev.1440704062.jpg" alt="Justin Lansing ’07" title="Justin Lansing ’07" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" data-max-w="640" data-max-h="474"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “My time in Costa Rica was essential to gaining fluency in the language, and helped to open my worldview.”</p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/613-justin-lansing-07">Learn more about Spanish and sociology major Justin Lansing ’07</a>
  • <span class="lw_profiles_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1508-matthew-spehlmann-16"><img src="/live/image/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1200,1203/31831_spanishstudent.rev.1461595258.jpg" alt="Matthew Spehlmann ’16" title="Matthew Spehlmann ’16" class="lw_image" width="242" height="242" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1200,1203/31831_spanishstudent.rev.1461595258.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/57/width/242/height/242/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1200,1203/31831_spanishstudent.rev.1461595258.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1200" data-max-h="1600"/></a></span></span><div class="quote"><p> “The Spanish professors imparted the friendliness and encouraging spirit that is so characteristic of Spanish-speaking people.” </p></div><a class="recruit-link" href="/live/profiles/1508-matthew-spehlmann-16">Matthew Spehlmann ’16 studied economics, Spanish, and computer science.</a>

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