French Language Job Opportunities

Speaking French may be required or considered an asset in careers in law, transportation, protective services, management, communications and education. Read on to learn more about careers that can involve French language skills.

Career Options for French Language Job Opportunities

There are some jobs that require people to have the ability to speak a foreign language, and they are good options for those who speak French who want to utilize their foreign language skills daily. There are also a number of professions in which foreign language skills can be an asset, and although speaking French may not be mandatory, it may be a skill that appeals to employers when considering who to hire or promote.

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Job Outlook (2014-2024)*
Interpreters and Translators $46,120 29%
Postsecondary French Teacher $63,500 (for Postsecondary Foreign Language and Literature Teachers) 11% (for Postsecondary Foreign Language and Literature Teachers)
Immigration Lawyers $118,160 (for all Lawyers) 6% (for all Lawyers)
Flight Attendants $48,500 2%
Top Executives $103,950 6%
Immigration and Customs Inspectors $78,120 -1 to +1%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Information for French Language Job Opportunities

Interpreters and Translators

Interpreters and translators are expected to be fluent in at least two languages and have a bachelor's degree. Those who speak French will use their language skills to convert written or spoken statements from French to English or English to French. Interpreters specifically focus on translating statements, while translators work with written texts such as books, articles or other documents.

Postsecondary French Teacher

Postsecondary French teachers instruct students who are studying French at the undergraduate or graduate level. As part of their duties they may speak in French to their students, assess their students' ability to speak French and read assignments and other materials that are written in French. Postsecondary teachers are typically required to have a doctoral degree in their field, and postsecondary French teachers should be fluent in French.

Immigration Lawyers

A law license and a law degree are required to be a lawyer. Immigration lawyers specifically focus on working with clients who are moving from one country to another and helping them move through the legal process involved. Those who speak French may be able to attract French-speaking clients who don't have strong English language skills.

Flight Attendants

Flight attendants look after the passengers on planes. Since they may work on international flights, those that speak French will be able to communicate effectively with passengers whose native language is French. They may be able to give them directions they can understand and answer any questions these passengers have. Flight attendants are required to be certified by the Federal Aviation Administration, to complete on-the-job training and to have at least a high school diploma.

Top Executives

The specific educational requirements for top executives can vary, but a bachelor's degree and practical experience are usually the minimum requirements; a master's in business administration can be an asset. Top executives provide direction for an organization so that it achieves its objectives. Top executives frequently travel, and those who work for international organizations with offices in countries where French is spoken may have a distinct advantage at working with their international counterparts since they are able to communicate in the local language with all staff.

Immigration and Customs Inspectors

Immigration and customs officers greet people who are arriving in a country and ensure that they have the proper authorization to be in the country. Those who speak French will be able to communicate effectively with travelers from French-speaking countries and may be involved in questioning them in French or translating directions to them so that they can comply with an inspection if required. It's possible to become an immigration and customs inspector with a high school diploma, although many immigration and customs inspectors do earn their bachelor's degree.

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