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WHY STUDY RUSSIAN?
According to the language catalog, The Ethnologue, Russian is the 8th most spoken language in the world. It is spoken by more than 260 million people around the world: among which about 153 million people speak it as their first language, and 110 million – as their second. It is not only the official language of Russia, but also of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. Additionally, it is spoken in Israel, the Balkans, Ukraine, Armenia and the USA.
The world’s newest “Silicon Valley” is Skolkovo, outside of Moscow. It is a center for the development of nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, and much more. In multiple fields of engineering, including aerospace, Russia remains a major driving force. Russian carries immense promise in the development of information technology; after English, Russian is the most used language on the Internet.
Russian culture is on one of Europe’s most influential and admired. Sharing a lot with the rest of Europe, Russian is at the same time fundamentally different. Studying Russian opens up a country of amazing geographical and cultural diversity, with a dramatic past full of rich, larger-than-life figures. The knowledge of Russian will allow you to understand contemporary Russian society better. You’ll also be able to translate the secret language from “A Clockwork Orange” and phrases from “James Bond” and “Wanted”.
Russian is more phonetic than English meaning that after a few classes you will be able to sound out Russian words. There is nothing like bow and bough or bow (and arrow) versus to bow. English and Russian are both Indo–European languages, and share more vocabulary than you might realize at first. Moreover, globalization has resulted in a lot of English borrowings into contemporary Russian. Learning Russian could be your foot in the door to understanding what other people in Eastern Europe are saying too! They all have plenty of words in common, and much of the grammar is very similar too.
If you are reading this page, you’ve already been exploring the opportunities to learn more about the Russian language and culture.
Proficiency in Russian, a critical language, is attractive to many employers. It combines well with other majors: business and Russian, science and Russian, political science or history and Russian, English and Russian, another foreign language and Russian, engineering and Russian, mathematics and Russian, music/arts and Russian. There are numerous job openings in such government bodies as the State Department, the Commerce Department, the Justice Department, the Department of Defense, and the various intelligence agencies. Unlimited commercial opportunities, emerging from an expanding Russian economy, have created myriad job openings for those with multiple language skills. Meanwhile, Russia remains the lingua franca of a massive portion of Eurasia, so studying it opens you up to numerous NGOs, companies and government bodies both in that region and at home.
Please contact us to learn more about the Russian Program at the U.