Modern Languages

Olivet's mission is to lead students to improved proficiency in world languages through a program that focuses on communication in the target language, real-life practice and cultural competence in order to equip them to serve God in local and international settings. At Olivet, modern language students explore and experience reading, writing, speaking, listening, linguistics and visual literacy. These language studies go way beyond the high school level. Students prepare to be effective communicators by immersing themselves in speaking and writing. They also study and experience the culture.

For example, learning to communicate in Spanish opens the doors to form relationship, to do life, and ultimately to share faith with millions of native Spanish speakers. Without the ability to communicate competently, many of these opportunities would not exist. Competency in Spanish also allows students to serve Hispanic populations locally and internationally and to understand more deeply how God is moving in Spanish-speaking countries.

General Education Language Courses:

  • Arabic
  • Chinese
  • French
  • Spanish

Areas of Study

Spanish Education

Study Abroad

More than a dozen study abroad programs provide opportunity for experiencing languages in other cultures and countries.

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Possible Careers After Graduation

  • High school teacher
  • Missionary
  • Minister
  • Teacher of English or Spanish in other countries
  • Interpreter
  • Government contractor
  • Nonprofit organization specialist
  • Professor
  • English as a Second Language teacher

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Learn why Olivet’s dedication to faith and integrity have earned its rank as Illinois's number one Christian university.


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Serving the Local Community

Spanish students often volunteer as translators for Hispanic families in the Kankakee area school systems. Additionally, there are multiple community organizations and churches in which to get involved and use Spanish-speaking skills.

Nancy Bonilla

After college graduation, Nancy Bonilla worked as a missionary and later as a teacher for Niños de Mexico in Mexico. Her husband, Jorge, is a native of Mexico. Her doctoral research focused on foreign language pedagogy and oral proficiency development.

Modern Languages Faculty

By the Numbers
minutes from Chicago’s diverse cultural community
student-to-faculty ratio
Hispanic people living in the U.S.
network of Olivet alumni

Exposure to World Languages

At Olivet, students can also study beginner levels of Italian, Arabic and Chinese.

Double Majoring in Spanish

Spanish is an excellent choice for double majoring with business, social work and other majors.

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