National survey reports foreign languages and literature majors get top pay

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Karin Mackenzie, (808) 956-4051
Colleges of Arts & Sciences, Arts and Sciences Community and Alumni Relations
Posted: Jul 9, 2014

Top-Paying Liberal Arts Majors
Top-Paying Liberal Arts Majors

The National Association of Colleges and Employers recently reported that the top-paying liberal arts majors for 2014 graduates are foreign languages and literature, with the average starting salary of $46,900. English language and literature follow with an average starting salary of $42,200. The results are based on job offers that students accepted earlier this year and were reported by employers in February 2014 primarily through a variety of government surveys.

This report does not come as a surprise to UH Manoa College of Languages, Linguistics, & Literature Dean Robert Bley-Vroman, who takes great pride in what the college provides for both academia and professional pursuits. “When studying languages and literatures, students learn much more than the disciplines themselves; they also gain greater competence in other subject matters such as math and English. These skills can translate into better testing scores, superior written and verbal communication, a well-rounded and integrated educational experience, and more job opportunities, to name just a few advantages."

The importance of foreign language competency in the workplace is increasing. Government agencies, all branches of the military, and private enterprise are just of few of the sectors that need speakers and translators, not only with language skills, but also with cultural knowledge. The world’s economies and political spectrum demand fluency in Arabic, Chinese, Korean, and Russian, to name a few. In Hawaiʻi, languages of Southeast Asia and the Pacific are also needed.

Bley-Vroman is happy to report that the College of Languages, Linguistics, & Literature at UH Manoa teaches all these languages, and dozens more. “The extent of our faculty’s expertise is truly impressive. From Sanskrit and Hindi, to Chinese and Italian, you can likely find the language you’ve always wanted to learn at UH Mānoa.”

The College of Languages, Linguistics, & Literature of the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa provides an extensive and complementary curriculum in English and foreign languages, literatures, and linguistics. Highly specialized centers and laboratories add remarkable breadth and depth to course offerings, and give students cultural and real-world learning experiences. The faculty effectively integrates teaching with practical application, contributing to the college’s world-class stature in many areas. As one of the four colleges that comprise the Colleges of Arts & Sciences, LLL is also part of the largest academic unit on campus.

If you would like to support the College of Languages, Linguistics, & Literature, please visit