For Avinash Kundu, the summer break has come as an opportunity to pursue his passion – learning a foreign language. The B.Tech graduate has finished 20 days in his French class and is racing towards completing the basic level course before he takes up another language – Spanish. “Adding an international language in your CV is a big advantage. It’s like a weapon in your arsenal,” says Kundu, who will be heading to the USA this year to pursue masters course in Information Systems. “I took it up also because of my interest in learning a new language, which also helps open up a whole new culture,” he adds. Like Kundu, the city has seen interest growing among youngsters to take up courses in foreign languages. While there are those who learn a foreign language just for the love of it, professional ambition does play a big part too.
In an increasingly globalised world, there are plenty of opportunities in multi national companies. In such a situation, the role of language interpreters, translators, analysts, communicators are very crucial, thus paving way for those having a degree or diploma in particular language. Many IT firms look for individuals, who have such added language skills, as it helps them connect with clients worldwide. The Institute of Foreign Languages (Academie De Langues Etrangeres) offers courses in French, Spanish, German and Japanese. “French has been the more preferred language. But we are also seeing good demand for Spanish. The language has a much wider reach as it is in the top four most widely used languages in the world,” said its director Michael Anil Betha .
Engineering students, professionals and entrepreneurs form a big percentage of the Spanish language course. But maximum people have opted for German language, Mr. Betha added. “Most students opting for German are heading to Germany for masters courses,” he said. Germany being Europe’s most populous and economically strongest nation with which India’s trade is expanding, offers plenty of career opportunities. There is also demand for Japanese.
This year the institute will be starting summer camps for school students wherein French or Spanish can be learnt. This will be a 25-class module beginning from next week.