Report provides hope for English and foreign language scholars

According to a recent Modern Language Association’s Job Information List report, the job market for English and foreign language scholars, though still poor, beat out previous forecasts.

Though the MLA report gives hope to graduates with English or foreign language degrees, it also predicts that in 2011 there will be fewer positions in language scholarship than there have been in the past 35 years, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education.

The MLA report predicts that available jobs for those with English degrees will be 27.5 percent lower than those last year; foreign language degree openings are predicted to fall 26.7 percent. Last year, the respective declines were 24.4 and 27 percent. If the predictions are accurate, jobs in both sectors will have declined over 45 percent in two years.

Rosemary G. Feal, the MLA’s executive director, said the reduction in openings was due to uncertain budget. Even though the fields are performing above expectations, Feal does not make any promises.

“It is very much in a state of flux,” Feal told the Chronicle. She explained that potential budgets cuts, as well as appreciating endowments of institutions, cause the current uncertainty.