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Majoring or minoring in German or Slavic makes good professional sense.

Just ask GSLL alumni.

Melissa Hannaman, Class of ’14.

MelissaHannamanAs a senior, it’s easy to feel like everyone expects you follow a particular career path when you graduate. After completing GSLL’s AmCham Internship Program in Germany, I feel like my job possibilities are limitless. As a business major with an emphasis in Finance, I always saw myself doing some form of investment banking. When I was looking for an internship last year, I initially started looking in the US at traditional banks and the internship programs that they offered. Everything seemed hyper-competitive and overwhelming. I just saw myself as one out of 300 applicants applying for only a few positions. I had no idea where I stood apart from everyone else.

With my German minor, I applied for the AmCham Internship Program in Germany and was quickly offered multiple positions across the financial services industry. I was offered internships in three different companies: an international consumer bank, a media group, and an investment banking services boutique specialized in merger and acquisition consulting. I accepted the last offer because it was in the investment banking industry and was a small, family-owned company that really made me feel valued.

At my internship, I was assigned all kinds of tasks from company valuations to strategic partner research. I was also translating legal documents from German to English and reviewing emails from partners that were written in English to important clientele. Not only did the company benefit from having a native English speaking intern, but I also greatly improved my German skills by using them every day in a professional and personal context.

After graduating in May 2014, I plan on going back to Germany to work in corporate finance or consulting. I strongly believe that the interviews that I have been offered have come as a result of my AmCham internship made possible thanks to my minor in GSLL. I realize that even in competitive hiring environments, my language skills allow me to fill a unique niche with German employers that would not have been possible in the US.

Kortney Wager, Class of ’17.

After graduating from Carolina as a double major in German and Biology, I landed the kind of job I always wanted! I’ll be working for an innovative biotech start-up located in downtown Durham. I’ll be a research technician working with brain metastases in mouse models. I’m very excited about this opportunity; it’s my dream job since I was in fourth grade! In my interview for this job and every other position I applied to, each company asked me about my German major in conjunction with my biology major and chemistry minor. I know my focus in German piqued their interest and made me a memorable candidate, especially since no one else they interviewed had such a strong background in language, literature, and culture. Being able to talk about my study abroad experience was helpful as well. I was able to show that I’ve been exposed to many different perspectives and it invited the interviewers to talk casually about their own experiences in Europe as well. Even though I am not yet pursuing a career in Germany, my German major has still be extremely helpful in getting a position in STEM!


Learn about the requirements for the six degree programs based in the Department of Germanic & Slavic Languages & Literatures.