Learn Portuguese for a bright future

Portuguese is the fifth most spoken language in the world today and spoken by almost 200 million people worldwide. It is one of the languages, which acts as an added benefit to one’s career. The language has unique and distinctive features…

FOR MANY decades, other than English, French, German, and Spanish were natural choices while learning a foreign language. But with the changing time, some others languages also proved their potential as prospective career option. Portuguese is one of these languages, which acts as an added benefit to one’s career. Portuguese, like the French, Spanish and Italian, is a neo-Latin language and has unique and distinctive features, wide variations in punctuation, vocabulary and usage and influences from African and Amerindian languages and cultures. It is the fifth most spoken language in the world today and spoken by almost 200 million people worldwide.

As a result of Portugal’s expansion since the early 15th century, it is the official language of Portugal, Brazil, and five African countries, namely, Angola, Mozambique, Guine’-Bissau, Cape Verde and Sao Tome e Principe, and still spoken in Macau, East Timor and Goa. The study of Portuguese, therefore, embraces the language, history, and culture of four continents- Europe, Africa, America and Asia. With Portugal’s established position within the European Union (EU), the explosive growth of Brazil’s economy along with its membership of Mercosul, and the emerging market in Angola and Mozambique, the Lusophone world anticipates a bright future full of opportunities for students, who study its language culture and history.

But how Indian students, specially those from Kolkata, would benefit from learning Portuguese? “A good knowledge of the language prepares students for careers in business and finance, foreign affairs, international trade, education, medicine, health care and public service. Increasingly, employers seek out students with cross cultural competency,” says Rita Ray, professor of Portuguese, Jadavpur University.

As far as language scholarship is concerned, one year duration to study the language in Portuguese University is available every year under the Indo-Portuguese Cultural Exchange Programme. In addition, there are research scholarships in the field of history and literature, for which knowing the language is essential. From 2007, Institution of Camoes, the official body for promoting Portuguese language and culture worldwide, has included Jadavpur University in its special assistance programme. It will provide audio and video study material to the university. Language scholarships are also available under this programme.

A substantial part of today’s young generation, join Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector every year as it is a lucrative career option. As Brazil is becoming a potential power in the international business world and our very own TATA is investing in Portugal, the demand of this language has increased vehemently in the BPO sector. A student of Jawharlal Neheru University (JNU) says, “In JNU there is a great demand of students with good knowledge of Portuguese for the campus interviews for Information Technology (IT) and Information Technology Enabled Services (ITES) job.”

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4 Responses to “Learn Portuguese for a bright future”

  1. Rafael Says:

    Portuguese language is taking the world by storm. Nobody thought this would happen. 240 million speakers on every continent, and 5th most spoken in the world. The 2014 World Cup, 2016 Olympics will put the Portuguese language on the front page. People are lining up to learn it as a second language. It is more widespread globally than even Spanish.

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