World Languages and Literatures Department

3 women standing around a presentation.
Four women smiling, standing in front of a pool.
From left to right: Yesenia Perez, Vice-President of Colombia Francia Márquez, Melissa Rosie Garrecht, and Christina Nuñez
Students on a bus.
6 women standing in front of two student project presentations.
Rosie Gerrecht, Taylor Wall, Yasiris Hernandez, Dr. Maria Montoya, Yesenia Perez, and Christina Nunez presenting Living Bilingual & COIL at SRCA 2023

The Department of World Languages and Literatures offers a variety of courses in language, culture, civilization and literature, a wide range of overseas programs, and a committed and engaging faculty.

We offer French and Spanish as both major and minor programs. Students may also choose a foreign language education major, with a concentration in French or Spanish, for secondary or elementary education. French or Spanish can be taken either as a primary major or as one of two majors.

The objective of the programs is to develop language skills in the offered languages at all levels of competence and to lead students to a broad appreciation and deep understanding of diverse literary and cultural traditions of Spanish and French expression throughout the world. Upper-division courses focus on developing analytical, writing, and oral skills through rigorous study of literature, cinema, culture, and history.

Upon graduation, majors should be able to demonstrate advanced competence in written and spoken language, and the ability to read critically, interpret analytically and write coherently about texts produced in French- or Spanish- speaking countries. They should be able to identify and evaluate the specific nature of a wide array of literary genres. Majors are encouraged to explore all periods and genres of literature in Spanish and French, as well as a wide variety of critical approaches.

Student Spotlight

A woman smiling at the camera during a winter hike.

Melissa Rosie Garrecht, Graduate in Secondary Spanish Education

The World Language Program was an unexpected turn in my life that resulted into being the best decision I have ever made. I have always wanted to learn a language, but it was very intimidating. At first when I entered the World Language department, I was a concentration in Spanish with little belief I would be able to speak another language. Nonetheless, the professors within the department supported me in any way they could while completing my concentration in Spanish; I had the opportunity to be a Teacher's Assistant in Spanish and an English tutor for Spanish Speaking students around the world as well as in the local community. In my last semester of completing Spanish requisites, I realized I wasn’t ready to stop taking Spanish. The professors of the language department supported me to develop my language skills and I continue to learn, so I extended the concentration into a major in Spanish. This gave me the opportunity to study Spanish more in depth as well as offer new opportunities for my Spanish speaking peers under the guidance of my professors. I had the opportunity to co-write a Spanish Phonetics and Phonology Open Educational Resource (OER) for my peers, instruct a course on ESL to international students from around the world, created a Spanish speaking club on campus, and was even given the opportunity to do a funded research project on English Phonetics and Phonology in Cali, Colombia resulting in a OER in English Phonetics and Phonology. Without the support of the World Language and Literatures Department at SUNY Oneonta, I would have never discovered my true passion for learning about other languages and cultures. I also would have never believed that I could be fluent in Spanish. When I graduate from SUNY Oneonta, I plan on using my newfound skills to reach as many students as I can as both a Spanish and ELL high school teacher. I also plan to keep learning and growing within my Spanish speaking skills, continuing to travel and teach abroad, as well as continuing to create OER materials to help provide equal, accessible, and free education to students around the world.

Christina Nunez smiling under banners with the flags of the world.

Christina Nunez, Graduate in Spanish Adolescence Education

Deciding to major in a language proved to be the most judicious choice I could have made. As a heritage speaker, I had always felt inadequate in my Spanish-speaking and writing skills, lacking vocabulary and proper grammar. My decision to study Spanish as a major has significantly improved my proficiency in these areas. Furthermore, my pursuit of this academic discipline has afforded me the opportunity to explore diverse cultures through interactions with my professors and classmates. I have been fortunate to receive exceptional guidance and mentorship from the Spanish department's faculty members, who have supported my development as a student and a leader. Notably, I have served as an English and Spanish tutor, a tutoring coordinator for MCC, a teaching assistant for a Spanish conversation course, and a fully-funded research fellowship in Colombia. In the last semester, I studied abroad in Valencia, Spain, where I gained a unique cultural experience that enriched my language and cultural awareness. My passion for Spanish language and culture has been nurtured by these academic and personal experiences, and I aspire to teach Spanish at the middle or high school level while also exploring diverse Spanish-speaking countries. The language department holds a special place in my heart, and I am grateful for the invaluable opportunities it has provided me at SUNY Oneonta.


Department of World Languages and Literatures

Cheryl Jones
Office Assistant
300 Schumacher Hall

Tel: 607-436-3409

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