Career Opportunities

Chinese is applicable in a variety of settings in the United States and abroad. Mastery of Chinese allows students to consider careers in such fields as education, government, international trade, banking, print or electronic media, and tourism. Many employers are eager to hire graduates who are proficient in Chinese because their business requires them to deal with native speakers of Chinese.

Careers in which Chinese is the primary emphasis include teaching Chinese at all levels; interpreting and translating for the United Nations, the government, or for private and public organizations; and a variety of positions in the travel and tourism industry at home or abroad, such as flight attendants, travel agents, and tour guides.

Careers in which proficiency in Chinese is a good secondary tool include banking and finance, business, sales, export purchasing, foreign market analysis, journalism, foreign correspondence, science and research, library science, hotel management, publishing, radio broadcasting, and teaching English in China to employees in corporations abroad.

All who study Chinese find that the experience sharpens their understanding of language in general and enables them to use their native languages more effectively and thus exercise a greater amount of control over their own lives, no matter what their eventual fields of interest or occupations.

Beginning salaries generally range from $26,000 to $30,000 or sometimes higher depending on candidates' skills and experience, and whether Chinese is of primary or secondary importance in daily job performance. Chinese language graduates find their marketable skills considerably enriched by their humanities education.