The Arabic language can offer numerous career opportunities in the US. That’s because it is regarded as a language of interest by the American State Department due to its security and strategic interests in the Arab and overall Middle Eastern world.
Not just that, today, Arabic is the fifth-largest language spoken worldwide.
Therefore, if you learn to write, read or speak the language, you’ll gain access to the world of well-paid and exciting career opportunities.
Also, the employment market for multilingual Arabic speakers is expanding, and as a result, people are flocking to add it to their list of skills
Want to know what careers opportunities Arabic offers? Read on!
Why Learn Arabic?
Those wanting to learn Arabic as a second language or pursue a formal education in Arabic studies usually have one question on their minds: “is learning Arabic hard?”
It can be challenging for English and non-Arab speakers; however, if you take the right approach and learn with the help of professionals, the process can be fun and easy.
Want to know why you should take it up? Here are a few benefits of learning the Arabic language:
The Arabic Language Is In Demand
Arabic looks really good on a CV. This is because government agencies are always on the lookout for credible and experienced Arabic speakers.
It offers avenues into the government sector and in other private sectors, including:
As a result, knowing Arabic will help you shape invaluable business relations with networks in wealthy Arab countries such as UAE, Qatar, etc.
A Gateway To Learn Other ME Languages
Learning Arabic is a gateway to learning other Middle Eastern languages such as Persian or Farsi, Urdu, Turkish, and even Hebrew.
A vast majority of the vocab of other ME languages are similar to and derived from Arabic words. This way, if you intend to learn any different language, you can smoothly grasp their grammatical and semantic concepts.
Gain International Experience
Traveling and studying abroad is a choice available to pupils who want to explore a second language. While most people choose Latin America or Europe, some visit countries like Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, or Morocco to spend an exchange year.
Their culture, contexts, history, and traditions are rich and worth your time to explore. In short, it can offer a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Careers In Arabic
As discussed, learning the Arabic language opens a wide variety of employment opportunities, from public policy to journalism to education. And as the number of Arabic speakers grows worldwide, so do career opportunities.
If you’ve got a degree in Arabic and are wondering what jobs opportunities you have, here are a few you can pursue with your Arabic degree:
You can become a foreign correspondent or a reporter. Being highly fluent in Arabic and having a comprehensive understanding of the associated culture makes you an ideal foreign correspondent or reporter in Arab countries.
The job will have you cast featuring stories and follow crucial developments in Arab countries. Additionally, here are some other responsibilities in a career in communication:
- Design, plan, propose, and research ideas for on-air, social media, and online programs and story segments
- Provide original reporting with advanced know-how of ways to customize news and reporting, catering to various audiences
- Keep associated files and generate news sources
- Contribute to planning coverage
- Communicates routinely with international as well as local desk editors – discuss story ideas and news developments
- Locate material using press conferences, direct coverage, and interviews
- Cover stories and news as instructed by the desk editors. Also, may frequently travel to various Arab regions under extreme conditions
- Prepares and exhibit special reports, documentaries, program segments, and series examining crucial subjects thoroughly
- Under the direction of an assigned editor or a producer, assist or anchor in showing live coverage of significant hearings, news conferences, events, and other developments
Interpreter And Translator Careers
It’s amongst the most sought-after jobs that the Arabic language can offer to new graduates. In addition, media corporations, government departments, and international corporations – big or small – constantly look for Arabic interpreters or translators for content.
While Arabic translators predominantly work with papers and documentation, interpreters offer a vocal rendition of the spoken language.
According to the “Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS),” there will be approximately 29% of employment growth for translators and interpreters by 2024.
Nevertheless, here are some significant duties, responsibilities, and tasks that Arabic interpreters and translators typically do:
- Maintain records and files as assigned to provide an up-to-date reference trail
- Prepare a range of documents such as letters, handbooks, bulletins, correspondence, information, etc. to provide materials in various languages as required
- Read different documents (for example, bulletins, correspondence, handbooks, information, letters, etc.) to interpret written materials in diverse languages
- Compile information terms and technical terms into terminologies and glossaries
- Review and edit different translations for context, style, readability, and accuracy to make sure they meet established guidelines
- Leave the style and tone of the actual language unchanged
- Translates numerous written documents like letters, handbooks, information, and so on to provide precise interpretation and translation for smooth organizational functions
- Type idiomatic and verbatim translations to offer written documentation
- Write fluently, speak and read at least two languages, including English
- Travel as required to provide help with some of the most complex and technical translations
With better Arabic cultural understanding and skills, you’ll be in an excellent position to begin your professional career in finance and banking.
Most banks and their clients need skilled Arabic speakers to execute and manage initiatives in Gulf countries and beyond, such as Africa.
If you join an international bank as an Arabic speaker, you’ll be their mouthpiece. Hence, you can work as a customer service executive, communication executive, public relations officer, corporate consultant, or contract consultant, helping multinational corporations secure deals with big Arabic companies.
Not just that, you can also work as a political risk analyst, collecting info about Arab communities and countries to ascertain ‘investment risks’ in different regions.
Here are a few job responsibilities that you’ll have to execute as a political risk analyst:
- Gather and analyze information from various sources about a specific area of concern
- Track conditions and upgrade intelligence databases and platforms with developments and trends
- Use modeling tools as well as data analytics for calculating risk scores
- Generate scenario forecasts and models for different policy/business decisions to evaluate the effect of international and political developments
- Write tailor-made risk assessment reports for customers, including providing recommendations about confronting risks
- Research and pen articles and reports on developments and trends in the sector or region
- Provide verbal presentations and briefings to customers and the broader public on your study
- Develop and report regularly with the network of groups and individuals in the sector or region – including business, government, academic, journalistic contacts
- Read regional and/or sector-specific publications and press to maintain the latest knowledge of various political developments
All in all, as the region is growing, the number of job opportunities for Arabic speakers also increases exponentially.
Another possible career option that you can take after your graduation with an Arabic degree is Law. Again, with knowledge of Arabic, you can cast your net in a broader audience of potential clients.
You can get a law-related job like a legal assistant, arbitrator, corporate lawyer, corporate consultant, or contract consultant. These will allow you to collaborate with Arabic clients and companies.
Another option is to become an Arabic teacher. With an undergraduate degree in Arabic studies, you can teach at some of the best schools in the world.
However, you’ll need a master’s degree in Arabic studies to teach at a university.
Apart from that, you may also require a certificate in teaching based on the school, college, or university you intend to provide teaching services.
Not just that, you can offer Arabic classes to particular types of people such as corporate education, armed forces, veterans, and adult students.
One positive of choosing teaching as your profession is that you can begin working independently by offering private Arabic tutoring.
Nevertheless, here are some of the job roles you’ll be expected to carry out as an Arabic teacher:
- Use curricula resources to align sequence and scope, annual plans, lesson plans, and unit plans; develop final, midterm, and interim assessments as required
- Develop and apply standards-aligned, ambitious Arabic lesson plans aimed at the final goal of pupil’s performance (at or above) grade-level expectations
- Offer motivating, engaging, and precise instructions in the class, individual settings, or small groups
- Offer tutoring and academic support to individual students or small groups as scheduled or required, including after-school tutoring
- Work to improve the efficaciousness in all organizational practices, using the school’s teacher-performance rubric as the guide
- Utilize feedback to create dynamic changes in the overall performance
- Design and carry out programs that support constructive student behavior and which motivate learners to show the actual leadership values of the institution
- In cooperation with the Academic Dean, you’ll have to evaluate pupils’ achievement data
- Execute data monitoring system and utilize data to communicate instructional delivery and development
Another underrated and profitable area in the education sector is research. Being a graduate in Arabic studies, you can contribute immensely to Arabic studies through your research.
Furthermore, you can either work independently or with well-known Arabic scholars or researchers. But, of course, if you want to be a renowned researcher, you’ll need a doctorate in Arabic.
And like most other researchers, you can also teach as a college/university professor.
Did you know that Arabic is the seventh-most widely spoken non-English language in America?. The Arabic language is also valued and regarded high by the US government, not just the common people.
Believe it or not, Arabic is a crucial language in America; in other words, bilingual speakers are highly sought after in various sectors, especially national security.
Therefore, with a degree in Arabic studies, you can get employment in various government sectors as:
- Relations specialist
- Foreign service officer
- Intelligence analyst
- Development officer
- PR officer
With an Arabic degree in hand, you can get employment as a development officer in government agencies and non-governmental agencies such as private organizations and nonprofits.
Foreign language fluency is a prerequisite for these types of positions. Hence, understanding the language will make you an ideal candidate for projects focused on the Middle East, Northern Africa, and Arabic culture.
Here are some of the job responsibilities that you’ll have to perform as a development officer:
- Building and maintaining partnerships with various organizations abroad and home
- Educating the audience and carrying out community outreach
- Looking for grants and managing budgets
- Overseeing projects
- Making sure program activities band together with set goals and missions
- Supervising development projects
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