Spanish Major | Baldwin Wallace University

BW's Spanish major links language study to real life, preparing you for an increasingly global society. 

Spanish

School of Humanities

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Department of World Languages, Literatures and Cultures

(440) 826-2244

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OVERVIEW

The native language of 400 million people across the world, Spanish is a culturally enriching and academically enhancing program of study. It is an outstanding major for students preparing for an increasingly global society.

A Spanish major builds competencies in reading, writing, speaking and language comprehension. Coursework includes literature, cultural history, civilization and contemporary lifestyles of Spanish and Latin Americans.

Baldwin Wallace's practical approach links rigorous language study to real life. You'll learn to view the world through a diverse cultural lens as you probe current events, intercultural communication and sensitivities, as well as other topics.

Experiential learning is central to the program. You can attend cultural events and culinary field trips, join student organizations and participate in a Spanish language table (La Tertulia).

Study abroad offers outstanding opportunities for year-long, semester, six- or two-week immersion experiences. Spain, South America and Latin America are some of the options available to you.

  • Dr. Karen Barahona writes on a white board as she talks with a student

    Our faculty works with students to help them gain a comprehensive understanding of the Spanish language.

  • Photo of Woman Presenting Spanish for the Professions

    The Spanish for the professions minor helps students in any major build competencies in handling a variety of communicative tasks with Spanish-speaking people and communities.

  • Photo of Day of the Dead Celebration

    BW's Spanish Club participates in several events throughout the year, including a Day of the Dead celebration. 

  • Photo of Sigma Delta Pi Honor Society

    Two inductees into the National Hispanic Honor Society, Sigma Delta Pi.

  • Photo of Spanish Language Tables Event

    Spanish Language Tables offer students opportunities to participate in weekly conversation tables and cultural events.

Study of Foreign Language Boosts Skills

Benefits of learning a foreign language are multi-fold and include:

  • Career marketability
  • Effective oral and written communication
  • Critical thinking and analytical reasoning
  • Global awareness and intercultural competence
  • Cultural appreciation

CAREER OPPORTUNITIES

Government, education, business and nonprofit sectors seek individuals who are fluent in two or more languages. Examples of positions include:

  • Teacher
  • Linguist/interpreter
  • Foreign service employee
  • Import/export manager
  • Customs enforcement officer
  • Curator/archivist
  • Travel industry employee

Spanish for the Professions Minor

With the goal of helping students in any major build competencies in handling a variety of communicative tasks with Spanish-speaking people and communities, BW is offering a Spanish for the professions minor. The new program includes optional service-learning courses as well as a broad range of classes focused on healthcare and other professions.

Become a Teacher

INTERESTED IN BECOMING A TEACHER?

If you would like to become a Spanish teacher, BW has an outstanding teacher education program.

CURRICULUM

Offered as a major and minor, Spanish blends comprehensive coursework with dynamic practical application.

It is an outstanding companion major or minor to other disciplines, including international studies, business, communication, sociology and political science.

Spanish courses are open to students of all majors. If you have previously taken classes in Spanish in high school, you will be required to complete a placement test prior to registering for courses.

Within the Department of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, BW offers additional majors and minors in French and German. Instruction also is available for Arabic, Chinese and Italian.

The Spanish major prepares students to:

  • Communicate in languages other than English
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of other cultures
  • Use foreign language in connection with other disciplines
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the nature of language and culture
Course Catalog

Course Descriptions

Course descriptions, requirements for the major and additional information can be found in the University Catalog.

STUDENT EXPERIENCES

Experiential learning bridges classroom study with real-world opportunities. You can enhance your studies through internships, co-curricular activities and other learning opportunities that include:

Student Clubs and Organizations

Sigma Delta Pi - National Honorary in Spanish
Members must have completed three years of study of college-level Spanish (18 semester credit hours) or the equivalent thereof, including at least three semester hours of a course in Hispanic literature or Hispanic culture and civilization (Spanish for the professions may be considered as a Hispanic culture course, provided that culture is the foundation of the course content). Members must be at the junior or senior level level; must have a minimal grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 point scale in all Spanish courses taken; must rank in the upper 35% of their class (and/or have at least a 3.2 cumulative grade point average) - sophomore, junior, or senior - and must have completed at least three semesters or five quarters of college work.

Spanish Club
Open to all students, BW's Spanish Club seeks to represent the cultures of Spanish-speaking countries to the BW community, as well as to promote the use of the Spanish language. The club aims to increase the awareness of Spanish/Hispanic cultures around the world through art, literature, history, traditions, guest speakers and more. It also promotes the learning and use of the Spanish language on the BW campus and in the surrounding area. Spanish Club aids in volunteer efforts that affect people from Spanish speaking countries or aid people in understanding cultural/language differences outside of the BW community.

Spanish and Latinx Student Association (S.A.L.S.A.)
S.A.L.S.A., which is open to all BW students, promotes awareness and appreciation of Hispanic and Latinx culture through educational and social opportunities.

Spanish Language Tables
Language tables are a great opportunity to practice language skills outside of the classroom. For more details regarding weekly locations and times, contact Dr. Karen Barahona at kbarahon@bw.edu or Brenda Lennox, office manager at the Department of World Languages, Literatures and Cultures at (440) 826-2244 or blennox@bw.edu. All language levels are welcomed.

BW International Film Series
The BW International Film Series is a student organization funded by the Student Government and supported by the French Club, German Club, Spanish Club, Middle Eastern Culture Club, Chinese Club and Italian Club. For further information, please contact Dr. Nadia Sahely at nsahely@bw.edu or Brenda Lennox at blennox@bw.edu in the Department of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures at (440) 826-2244.

ALUMNI SUCCESS

Baldwin Wallace has long championed the success of its students. Evidence of this can be seen in the extraordinary achievements of its alumni spread throughout the United States and the world.

Photo of Jessica VillacresJessica Villacres '20 is a speech-language pathology graduate student in Indiana University's STEPS bilingual training program. She earned a degree in Spanish and communication sciences & disorders and was a 2020 Fulbright recipient. She has worked as a Spanish translator for COAR Peace Mission and the Cleveland Office of Minority Health.

Photo of Katie FowlerKatie Fowler '20 is a speech-language pathology master’s student at Case Western Reserve University and an intern at The Orange Effect Foundation. She is working on a graduate meta-analysis pertaining to fluency disorders. She earned a B.S. in communication sciences & disorders and a B.A. Spanish.

Photo of Rachel SzelesRachel Szeles '17 is currently a graduate student at the University of Cincinnati. She received a double degree in psychology and Spanish from BW. She has worked as a Spanish translator for Big Brothers Big Sisters of America as well as a translator and legal assistant at Liner Legal.

Photo of Brad WeederBrad Weeder '17 received a double degree in psychology and Spanish from BW. He has worked as a Spanish translator for Medical Mutual, Stockyard, Clark-Fulton, Brooklyn Center and the Berea School District. He became TEFL/TESOL certified to teach English at Interamerican Studies (CEDEI) in Cuenca, Ecuador in 2017-19.

Photo of Jennifer JourilesJennifer Jouriles '16 works as an accountant at the Cleveland Clinic, where she utilizes both of her disciplines and also traveled to Honduras on a medical mission trip as a part of international outreach. She received a double degree in accounting and Spanish from BW and a Master's in Latin American and Caribbean Studies from University of Chicago.

FACULTY

 

Full-Time Faculty

Karen Barahona
Spanish Program Coordinator
Associate Professor
Ph.D., The University of Georgia

Matthew Feinberg
Assistant Professor
Ph.D., University of Kentucky

Adjunct Faculty

Rosa Mejía
Lecturer
M.A., Cleveland State University

Wallace Salkauski
Lecturer
Ph.D., Florida State University