So, you’ve finally made it. You’re finally sitting in your chair, pencils sharpened, papers and books neatly stacked in front of you, feeling both a little excited and a little nervous at the same time as you wait for your first class to start on your first day at university. All the hard work you did in high school, all the late-night test prep, all the waking early to take your exams, and all of the extra-curricular activities you participated in have finally paid off. And speaking of paying off, thank goodness for mom and dad who also worked very hard and scraped enough money to get you here. Congratulations!
Now other students are starting to come in, striking up conversations with each other with questions like, “Where are you from?” and “What are you majoring in?”. As you listen, you notice that they are majoring in the same degree as you (it doesn’t really matter what your major is, but for the sake of this story, let’s say it’s Business and Marketing). You smile to yourself, thinking that these are not only fellow students, but comrades too, in your quest to start your rule in the business world in four years.
You notice there must be 35 people in this class who are majoring in Business and Marketing. And that’s only one class. You start thinking and doing the math and suddenly you realize that there are hundreds of students at this university studying the same thing as you. In four years, they won’t be your comrades. They’ll be your competition in the job market. How many other students will be graduating from the thousands of other universities? Tens of thousands, maybe?
“Okay,” you think to yourself, “I didn’t come this far and work so hard to get here only to have to challenge every other fresh graduate for a position in a reputable company. I have to do something to stand out. Something very few other people are doing. What can I do?”
Well, my troubled student, I have an answer for you.
You can learn Arabic! We’ll tell you why learning it will be one of the best choices you ever made during your education.
First, learning Arabic makes you smarter. It improves your analytical and communication, boosts the cognitive functions of your brain, and encourages a deeper cultural understanding of the world you’ll live and work in.
You don’t have to give up your major to learn Arabic. In fact, combining academic areas of study will actually enhance your education and make you more competitive in the working world.
Speaking of competition, as we mentioned before, by the time you graduate there will be plenty of qualified applicants applying for a scant number of positions at reputable companies. This is true regardless of what you’re majoring in, but learning Arabic will help set you apart from your competitors.
The demand for workers who learn to speak Arabic and Arabic dialects has been rising among employers. This is especially for those who want to do business in Arabic speaking countries. Studies have shown that you can earn up to an average of $10,000 more than your colleagues who only speak English. Still, other research has shown that only 0.3 percent of people in the U.S. speak Arabic. With Arabic being one of the least commonly spoken languages in America, these numbers prove how easy it to set yourself head and shoulders above your competition just by learning Arabic.
You’ve surely learned about the basic concept of supply and demand in your Economics class in high school, but if you haven’t , it goes a little something like this: If you have a product, skill, or service that has high demand and low supply, the value of what you are offering increases significantly. In America, there is a low supply of graduates who have taken the time to learn to read Arabic, speak Arabic, or even learn anything about Arabic writing. In fact, it’s less than 1 percent, with only 32,286 out of 20.4 million students studying Arabic.
However, the demand for Arabic-speaking professionals in the US exceeds the supply. In the last decade-and-a-half, the United States government has stated that there is a great need for Arabic speakers to tackle the complex political, military, and economic problems surrounding US engagement in the Arabic speaking countries of the Middle East and North Africa. And it’s not just the government that is dire need of Arabic language skills. There is also the same trend occurring in the private and non-profit sectors as businesses try to find new ways to understand the developing markets of the Arab world.
In simple economic terms, the demand for Arabic speakers far exceeds the supply, meaning that, by studying Arabic, you’ve increased your value and are on your way to a rewarding and well-paid career.
Because of the low supply/high demand of Arabic in America, the US government has declared Arabic a critical language; as a result, they’ve also set up a specific scholarship program called the Critical Language Scholarship Program and is dedicated to helping students learn critical languages like Arabic. It’s not just the government that wants more Arab speakers, but there are also many other organizations giving away money to learn Arabic. Go to your favorite search engine and find out more. By learning Arabic, not only do you have the possibility of earning more money, but you can save more money, too.
Arabic isn’t just for people who study education or translation anymore. Even if your degree is in Law, Medicine or Art, Arabic can complement your degree and boost your career in such exciting fields as foreign service and affairs, defense and intelligence, business and trade, finance and banking, translation and interpretation, education, journalism, consulting, and many, many others.
Learning Arabic allows you to also make a difference in the world. Many international organizations such as the International Red Cross, UNICEF and USAID among others are in need of foreign service officers and professionals who speak Arabic. They offer rewarding career choices that allow you to, as Gandhi is quoted as saying “Be the change you want to see in the world.”
So there you have it. Now that you learned the best way to improve your career is by learning Arabic, what is the best way to learn Arabic? Of course, it’s with the Kaleela Arabic learning app – the leader in Arabic language learning apps – available for download to your IOS or Android mobile device from kaleela.com.