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University introduces Spanish minor

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

LAWRENCE – A highly anticipated minor in Spanish has been approved at the University of Kansas and will provide a new pathway for students to complement their degrees with skills in foreign language.

The study of Spanish language and literature expands opportunities in a variety of career paths for students, from public service to medicine. Spanish is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world and is the official language of 20 countries.

“KU houses the top Spanish program in the region, so we are thrilled to widen access to our curriculum to more students,” said Robert Bayliss, director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Spanish & Portuguese. “We’ve seen graduates with a Spanish major go on to build careers in Spanish-speaking industries, communities and countries all over the world. We’re eager to see how future graduates will utilize the knowledge they gain through the minor.”

Students in the minor will be required to take a combination of language, culture and literature courses. The department has also developed a new course, Spanish 101, that will be required for the major and minor. The course provides an overview of the field of study to prepare students for the expectations and opportunities that come with the degree.

“Faculty and students worked closely to develop a program that maintains top-quality instruction and meets students’ needs for future career paths,” said Stuart Day, chair of the Spanish and Portuguese department.

The minor was developed in response to student demand. The department receives 60 to 80 inquiries about a minor each year, and student senators passed a resolution in 2012 in support of a Spanish minor at KU.

The Spanish & Portuguese department, which is part of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, will offer the new minor starting in fall 2015. Interested students may contact the department at 864-3851 or

KU offers study in 40 languages, more than any other university between the Rocky Mountains and the Mississippi River. These languages, including Spanish, can be explored through the School of Languages, Literatures & Cultures, the entry point for the study of foreign languages and literatures at KU. 



Our Statement on Diversity in support of Rock Chalk Invisible Hawk and the University of Kansas Black Student Union’s efforts to combat racism.
The School of Languages & Cultures serves as a gateway to understanding the diversity of the world, through learning languages, literatures, and cultures, past and present. Through its research and teaching, the SLLC offers students opportunities for deep engagement with a wide range of languages, literatures, and cultures that provide the knowledge and skills to interact with and understand the world. The faculty and students who teach, research, and learn in the SLLC consider issues of diversity fundamental to all of our work. The study of others' languages, literatures, and cultures enables us to develop deep empathy and perspective informs the way that we approach issues before us, whether on a personal, local, regional, national, or global scale. Therefore take it as axiomatic that the SLLC stands for a campus that is committed to the meaningful sharing, contemplation, and discussion of ideas that emerge from multiple cultural perspectives and experiences. We continually rededicate ourselves to the principle of diversity. We strive to create an atmosphere where all students and faculty feel comfortable and welcome to express their views as well as work together to solve conflict. Further, we view our mission as a center of diversity on a flagship campus as requiring us to lead by example.

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