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MFL Honor Students posing for photo

Congratulations to our Spanish, German, French and Japanese Honor Students (Alpha Mu Gamma Initiation Ceremony)

Discover where languages can take you! Learning a language is one more path to explore the world and your career options.

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Modern Foreign Languages

You may know exactly what you want to do and be after you graduate from college. But why limit your outlook to just one area of the world? When you pair your studies with a degree offered by SVSU’s Department of Modern Foreign Languages, you unleash a new realm of possibilities for yourself. As a Cardinal at SVSU, we’ll give you skills to be an educator or a foreign correspondent. Or, we’ll show you how to bring your business skills to boardrooms beyond this continent. Whatever your aspirations, SVSU’s Department of Modern Foreign Languages can help you achieve them. Approved by both the Michigan Department of Education and adhering to guidelines of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, SVSU’s programs promise to equip you with the communication skills required for language proficiency. Your story starts when you apply to SVSU.

2021 Course Offerings
2022 Course Offerings

Meet a Cardinal

Students in programs in the department of Modern Foreign Languages are GOING PLACES! They come to us eager to immerse themselves in new cultures, new ideas and new languages. They study at home and abroad and they graduate prepared for all the new adventures they can dream of! Wherever their bright futures take them, Cardinals in MFL get their wings here and the sky is the limit. Meet some of them here and let their stories inspire you.

Courses of Study

SVSU offers both majors and minors in French and Spanish and a minor in Japanese. You can also choose to pursue a French or Spanish major or minor with a teaching certification. The Department of Modern Foreign Languages offers immersive experiences and a comprehensive language lab to develop proficiency. Our faculty integrate technological resources, online tools and multimedia in their courses, ensuring you engage with a language in a variety of contexts and forms. The Spanish, French and Japanese programs all hold weekly conversation hours where you interact with native or near-native speakers, improving your skills in the best way possible: practice. Click to explore the course details of the program that most interests you.

Career Options

Cardinals who major in a foreign language work in all kinds of fields—education, government and business as well as the fine arts and sciences and even technology and translation. And with SVSU’s 95 percent job placement rate, you can feel confident in the degree you earn as a Cardinal.  The world’s a thrilling place—let us help you prepare to engage all of it.  

Student Opportunities

SVSU connects you with many student organizations invested in language, culture and international travel. Here, you’ll discover opportunities to meet native speakers, practice using a foreign language, attend campus-wide multicultural events and travel to participate in foreign cultures yourself. SVSU also hosts a number of campus events like Foreign Language Day and the French Film Series. In addition, SVSU partners with the Japanese Cultural Center & Teahouse to promote understanding of Japanese language and culture both for our students and for the region. Click to discover the full scope of student opportunities available for foreign language students at SVSU.

Fellowships & Internships

At SVSU, we understand your study of a foreign language means you have a thirst to understand and interact with cultures different than your own. So our MFL department is committed to empowering every student through multicultural experiences. And that commitment shows in our fellowship and internship opportunities. For example, through the Health Professions Internship, Spanish students at SVSU can attend the Universidad Nacional De San Martin in Argentina or the University of Guanajuato in Mexico. Click to learn more about the host of opportunities available when you pursue a foreign language program at SVSU.

Study Abroad Scholarships

More than just speaking a language, SVSU knows you long to experience it. As a foreign language student, you get added benefits and incentives for studying abroad. Many scholarships are available to Cardinals studying a foreign language—from the MEXT Scholarship and Bridging Scholarship for the study of Japanese to the range of university scholarships available to all foreign language students. As Cardinals, we care, and SVSU is here to help your dreams of studying abroad become a reality.

Global Seal of Biliteracy

The seal for Global Biliteracy


We credential with the Global Seal of Biliteracy. 

The Global Seal of Biliteracy is an international credential that conveys proficiency with language skills in two or more languages for our qualifying candidates. This credential offers a competitive advantage for bilingual individuals by helping them earn scholarships, higher pay, advanced placement, increased study abroad opportunities and so much more. The Global Seal is and will be FREE for all.

To learn more about the Global Seal of Biliteracy visit their website at

Samantha Chew in FranceSamantha Chew, International Business and French double major, received the 2023 Department of Modern Foreign Languages/ American Association of Teachers of French Outstanding Senior in French Award. Sam was recognized for her 4.0 in French classes, and her leadership in rebranding and re-energizing SVSU's French Club as its president. Sam is a member of Alpha Mu Gamma foreign language honor society, recipient of the French-American Chamber of Commerce-MI Le Detroit scholarship, and participant in a semester-long study abroad program in Grenoble, France. She has also earned the Global Seal of Biliteracy Functional Fluency Seal. Félicitations, Sam! For more information about these awards and French at SVSU: Dr. Julie Foss, 

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Saginaw Valley State University


SVSU students address the needs of local and global communities through the integration of meaningful service and traditional instruction that incorporates reflection and critical thinking to enrich the learning experience. 

Saginaw Valley State University

Contact Us
(989) 964-4333(989) 964-4333

Department Chair

Monika Dix

Office Hours

Office hours are by appointment only. Please email to schedule an appointment.


Brown Hall 241