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What can I do with a major in German?


The information below describes typical occupations and employers associated with this major. Understand that some of the options listed below may require additional training. Moreover, you are not limited to these options alone when choosing a possible career path.

Description of German

Students majoring in German study one of the major languages of the world and are prepared in language, culture, and literature. Primary emphasis for German majors is on German-speaking countries in Germany, Austria, and a large part of Switzerland. German is also spoken as a first or second language in several countries in Eastern Europe. Having a greater sense of the German culture and language prepares students for professions in government, politics, international relations and business, banking, trade, travel, or a host of other related professions. Many companies in the United States and abroad are looking for employees who speak more than one language. Even if a student may not use his or her ability to speak German, the cultural awareness gained is a transferable skill that will be highly prized.

Possible Job Titles of German Graduates

(*Jobs secured as reported by Rhodes Career Services post-graduate survey)

Account Executive*
Asst. Dir. of Annual Giving*
Bilingual Instructor
CIA/FBI Special Agent
Civil Service Worker
College Professor
Community Relations Rep.
Copy Editor
Corporate Specialist
Customs Official
Employment Interviewer
Flight Attendant
Foreign News Journalist Foreign Services Worker
German Teacher
GIS Applications Developer
Hotel Manager
Immigration Specialist
Import/Export Agent
Intelligence Specialist Interpreter
International Engineering Aide
International Ticket Agent     
Junior Operations Clerk*
Language Researcher
Language Teacher*
Peace Corps Volunteer
Service Representative*
Speech Pathologist
Tour Guide
Travel Agent

Possible Employers and Employment Settings for German Graduates

(*Jobs secured as reported by Rhodes Career Services post-graduate survey)

Advertising Agencies
Air, Bus, and Rail Lines
CDS International
Chambers of Commerce
Colleges and Universities*
Delta Airlines
Federal/Government Agencies
Fulbright Commission*
Fritz Corporation*
Hotel Chains
Import / Export Companies
Investment Firms
Message Factors*
Crowne Plaza*
National Archives
News Bureaus
Peace Corps  
Nonprofit Organizations
Public Relations Firms
Public Service Organizations
School Systems
Travel Agencies
U.S. Air Force
Visitors Bureaus

Skill Sets and Interests Associated with German Majors

  • Fluency in speaking, reading, and writing German
  • Command of the English language
  • Ability to memorize detailed information
  • Background of general knowledge
  • Understanding of German-speaking countries
  • Proficiency in phonetics and ability to imitate sounds
  • Self-disciplined and patient
  • Motivated to learn new ideas
  • Appreciation for other cultures
  • Awareness of alternative life-styles
  • Skilled in learning linguistics
  • Adaptable to new environments
  • Love of travel

Top Career Services Resources for German Majors

  • Careers for Foreign Language Aficionados and Other Multilingual Types by H. Seelye and J. Day
  • Great Jobs for Foreign Language Majors by Julie DeGalan and Stephen Lambert
  • Teaching English Abroad by Susan Griffith
  • The Book of US Government Jobs by Dennis Damp
  • Directory of American Firms Operating in Foreign Countries
  • Directory of Foreign Firms Operating in the US

Rhodes Campus Contacts Associated with German

Career Services

Rhodes Department of Modern Languages

Additional Resources/Contacts for German Majors

American Association of Language Specialist
American Association of Teachers of German
American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages
American Translators Association
German American Chamber of Commerce
Goethe Institute – Atlanta
National Association of Teachers of English
Society for German-American Studies
U.S. Travel Association
The Electronic Embassy
The United Nations