Career Development For the Language Professional


  • Stephen A. Sadow

    1. Northeastern University
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      Stephen A. Sadow (Ph.D., Harvard University) is Professor of Modern Languages at Northeastern University, Boston.


ABSTRACT  Too often, foreign language professionals just let their careers happen, each academic year following the last. However, there is no reason that this should be so. Careers should be viewed as living, changeable entities. Career management is a type of self-empowerment by which you take control of your professional life. This article includes descriptions of successful careers in language teaching as told by the professionals themselves. Suggestions for a career adjustment are offered: First: Find yourself some role models. Second: Get some advice. Third: Do a self-survey. Fourth: Fantasize about your career. Fifth: Discuss your situation with professional colleagues. Career development issues make natural themes for meetings of foreign language organizations. Sixth: Network with others at a midpoint in their careers to turn up new possibilities, provide a source of skills training, and foster mutual support. Seventh: Read everything you can get your hands on about possible new directions. Finally, a decision about a career adjustment can often be quickly implemented.