Let’s play a little “Jeopardy.”
The answer: The West African language that one of the UW’s incoming freshmen rowers will be studying this fall.
The question: What is Twi?
Twi? Twi? You can click here for Wikipedia’s definition of it. My question is this: what happened to Spanish, French and German?
UW athletics will welcome close to 200 first-year students and transfer students this fall and they apparently are quite interested in the wide variety of foreign languages being offered at UW-Madison. In fact, it’s such a wide variety that BYU is the only school in the nation that offers more.
“The incoming students realize they’ll be looking for jobs in more of a world market,” said Mary Weaver-Klees, an advisor in our athletic department’s academic services office. “Knowing a foreign language is a way to stand out in the crowd and be more marketable.”
Weaver-Klees said the UW’s academic advisors are encouraged to introduce different languages to students. The students are heeding that advice. She says, just off the top of her head, that our student-athletes are studying Persian, Polish, Twi, Portugese, Italian, Spanish, French, German, Chinese, Japanese and Russian.
“This group of incoming student-athletes seems to have a great interest in a wider variety of foreign languages,” Weaver-Klees said.
They’re definitely not your father’s foreign language offerings.