Kellyn Simpkin-Girl In Front Of Eiffel Tower France Hat Paris

Why I Love Learning French

Every student, at one point in time, was required to take a foreign language class for the minimum number of credits to graduate and more often than not, be considered for college admissions — I’m sure you can relate for yourself. The thing is, many people seem to underestimate the actual reasons for learning, whether it be to get it over and done with or to really immerse, absorb and apply the language outside the classroom environment and towards common daily scenarios and conversations. This is about my experience with learning the French language, from how I began in high school and still carry it with me during my college education now at UCF. The ability to read, speak, listen and write in another language unrelated to one’s own is very exciting and offers savory benefits along the way.

  1. 1. French is unique, yet increasingly popular

    For starters, French is one of those languages that are closely related to English. Many students will likely opt for Spanish because it is mainstream and easily similar to English vocabulary. However, French is also one of those languages closely related and on the rise in offering and teaching courses at schools. Both French and Spanish are within the same language family known as Romance languages — all derived from Latin origin. This means there are many common similarities relating to vocabulary and grammar. To me, French was something that sounded different from the rest offered at my high school. I thought setting myself apart through a foreign language on a transcript or future resume would look attractive to potential employers. Not just simply mentioning how I took French, but also the thought of taking it throughout all four years and at all levels can seem intriguing to others. Also, I had already declared my major and knew that having global and cultural expertise would help to expand my career options. The demand for French translators and speakers is high due to the growing populations of Africa and Asia, where many countries were once colonized and influenced in the past by the French.

  2. 2. The opportunity to “Bon Voyage!”

    Everybody loves the idea of traveling to Paris and visiting some of the country’s iconic landmarks. After all, it is the most popular European city visited by tourists AND it’s also known as the City of Love. Doing activities like the climbing Le Tour Eiffel, taking a picture in front of Le Arc de Triomphe, walking around Le Louvre, boating along the Seine or shopping at the boujee stores of Les Champs-Élysées can be scratched off the bucket list. What better way to engage in speaking French than interacting with the locals and culture? Learning French has provided me the gateway to expand my horizons at the international scope. I am proud to say that I am studying abroad this upcoming summer and it will definitely be a summer to remember! Taking a language course at one of the prestigious universities in Europe is life-changing and will contribute to my heightened awareness about the French language, especially how it is used in France alone. There are multiple, different accents and slang across each region, not to mention texting language as well. By the time you return home from your trip abroad, you may as well have the Parisian accent and be an expert in no time!

  3. 3. Where this will take you beyond education

    Other than educational and financial benefits reaped from acquiring proficiency in another language, nonetheless it also has some lifelong social and emotional perks. Knowing a second language sharpens your brain as you progress throughout your life. You are able to retain most of the rules of grammar and vocabulary more, since you start at a young age or window for learning. I hope to expand my knowledge even further, approaching close fluency. It would be very fascinating to be able to communicate with others in a way that you successfully understand what is being spoken and answer correctly, knowing your hard work put forth eventually pays off in the long run. In addition, passing your cognitive language skills down a future family line means raising a bilingual family. Both cases are valuable, in particular with French since it is thriving among worldwide communities. Learning a language is not easy, but with the right amount of time devoted and a strong interest in doing so, it is achievable and rewarding to oneself.

Next time you are in a foreign language class or considering enrolling in one, think about all these factors and options available for you to take advantage of. Reflect on your goals for learning one and why you chose that specific language to study. Identifying and discovering what you want out of a foreign language experience can be a worthwhile asset for yourself and your overall well-being out in the real world.