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French and Francophone Studies Major

School of Humanities

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Baldwin Wallace University has discontinued the French and Francophone Studies major and is no longer accepting applications as of spring 2024. BW will continue to offer a minor and elective courses in French and Francophone Studies. View majors.

Undergraduate Admission

(440) 826-2222, 


Known for being the international language of politics, French also has application for science, technology, transportation and finance. It is an outstanding major offering diverse career opportunities.

Today, it is spoken on five continents and is the official working language of the United Nations, NATO, European Union, International Red Cross, World Health Organization, UNESCO and International Olympic Committee, among others.

Baldwin Wallace's French and Francophone Studies major offers a practical approach to language study that connects it to real life. You'll learn about current events, intercultural communication and sensitivities, French literature and civilization.

Coursework is comprehensive and integrates reading, writing, speaking and language comprehension.

Experiential learning is central to the program. You can attend cultural events and culinary field trips, join student organizations and participate in a French language table.

Study abroad offers outstanding opportunities for year-long, semester, six- or two-week immersion experiences. You can visit France, Quebec or other French-influenced areas.

Also complementary to your coursework are internships, independent study projects, service-learning activities and co-curricular involvement.


A main trading partner with the U.S., France is among the leaders of the world market. It ranks fourth in the Fortune Global 500, behind the USA, China and Japan. There are more Fortune Global 500 companies headquartered in Paris than in Beijing, New York, London or Munich.


Government, education, business and nonprofit sectors seek individuals who are fluent in two or more languages. Examples of positions include:

  • Arts-related manager
  • Curator/archivist
  • Linguist/interpreter
  • Foreign service associate
  • Fashion buyer
  • Teacher
  • Banking/finance manager
  • Travel industry coordinator

Become a Teacher


If you would like to become a French teacher, BW has an outstanding teacher education program.


Benefits of learning a foreign language are multi-fold and include:

  • Career marketability
  • Effective oral and written communication
  • Critical thinking and analytical reasoning
  • Global awareness and intercultural competence
  • Cultural appreciation


Offered as a major and minor, French and Francophone Studies blends comprehensive coursework with dynamic practical application.

It is an outstanding companion major or minor to other disciplines, including the fine arts, science, business, international studies, sociology, political science, history and philosophy.

French courses are open to students of all majors. If you have previously taken classes in French in high school, you will be required to complete a placement test prior to registering for courses.

Within the Department of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, BW offers a Spanish major and minor as well as courses in Arabic, Chinese, German and Italian.

The French and Francophone Studies major prepares students to:

  • Communicate in languages other than English
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of other cultures
  • Use foreign language in connection with other disciplines
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the nature of language and culture


Experiential learning bridges classroom study with real-world opportunities. You can enhance your studies through internships, co-curricular activities and other learning opportunities that include:

Student Clubs and Organizations

French Club

The club offers a forum for students and others interested in French social, cultural and language activities, including cinema, video, music, cuisine, discussions and more. Other BW foreign language clubs include the German Club, Italian Club, Middle Eastern Culture Club and Spanish Club.

Language Tables

Language tables are a great opportunity to practice your foreign language skills outside the classroom. All language levels are welcomed.

International Film Series

An annual event on campus, the International Film Series showcases films representing a variety of cultures.

French Recognition Society

The Baldwin Wallace French Recognition Society recognizes students whose accomplishments in the study of French have proven to be excellent. Society membership is extended to students who have sophomore standing or higher, are enrolled as a French and Francophone Studies major or minor, have at least a 3.0 GPA in French courses, a 3.3 GPA overall and have completed (or enrolled in) at least two courses beyond French 202. The BW French Recognition Society is an organization unique to BW that honors students who have excelled in French language studies.


At Baldwin Wallace, you'll experience personal and professional growth in a supportive community that challenges and inspires you to succeed. Baldwin Wallace has long championed the success of its students. Evidence of this can be seen in the extraordinary achievements of its alumni spread throughout the United States and the world.

Recent graduates with French degrees are finding success in a variety of careers.

Selena VenturaSelena Ventura '13 is French-speaking customer support specialist at Sherwin Williams in Cleveland. A French and international affairs major, Selena studied abroad in Aix-en-Provence. Her current position includes travel to Canada and work with a variety of countries. She is from Lakewood, Ohio.

Ashley FreytagAshley Freytag '12 is missionary for Fellowship of Evangelical Churches in Kedougou, Senegal. BW faculty challenged the Wauseon, Ohio, native to think critically about the world and become involved in Model African Union, an experience that helped her realize her passion for international missionary work.


Nadia Sahely

Professor of French and Francophone Studies
Ph.D., Brown University

Nadia Sahely

Full-Time Faculty

Nadia Sahely
Ph.D., Brown University

Adjunct Faculty

Anthony Celhay
M.A., Kent State University

Emma Guzowski
M.A.,The Ohio State University