By Adria Valdes
With so many languages out there, how do you choose which one to learn? Here are some suggestions of languages that could benefit your career.
With over one billion people on Earth currently speaking Mandarin as their native language, the numbers alone are a reason to learn this language. Already a massive world economy, China is expected to continue to grow even further and strengthen its influence across the world. In fact, at the 2010 World Expo, China shared plans for nine different futuristic communities expected to begin popping up in the next several years, a sure sign of big business opportunities. And if that's not enough, a recent article in the New York Times discussed the impact Chinese language is already having on New York's education system with 80 schools throughout the state currently offering Mandarin language programs.
One of the top two most widely spoken languages in the world, Spanish is a beneficial second language on virtually any continent, especially in the U.S. Currently, Hispanics make up 16% of the U.S. population and that's expected to jump to nearly 30% by 2050. The U.S. already does tons of business with Latin America, an economy that, despite the recent recession, has actually grown by 4.5% in the last year. Interested in working in Latin America? So are many Americans - the region has actually seen an increase of Americans working and retiring there over the years because of its low cost of living.
Recently called a significant player in the 'New World Economy' by Business Week, India is slowly reaching the forefront of world economic power. With most goods and services still significantly inexpensive, there are many opportunities for business start-ups and a need for Hindu-speaking Americans to help facilitate those ventures. Big companies like GE and Boeing are already planting seeds in India, which also provides many opportunities for bilingual individuals interested in working for these businesses.