East European StudiesEast European Studies
Eastern European Studies is, as the name implies, a fairly broad course of study. Students who choose this major study Russian and often another Eastern European language (Azeri, Czech, Polish, Romanian, Serbo-Croatian, Uzbek, or Yiddish are just a few.) This work is combined with the study of the literature, culture, art, politics, law, geography, history, and society of Eastern Europe. That’s a lot of stuff. The time has never been better, however, to consider this major as a course of study. Since the fall of the Berlin Wall and the splitting and reorganization of the U.S.S.R., Eastern Europe has been in a constant state of change. In the past ten years, many Westerners have come to know this part of the world for the first time. Political analysts, language specialists, historians, journalists, and translators with a working knowledge of Eastern Europe may find themselves in great demand in the coming years.
If you can take Russian or Polish (or, by some chance, Serbo-Croatian, Uzbek, Yiddish, or Czech) at your school—do it. Since these languages are not often offered, you can start getting your experience in another foreign language. Classes in European history and world literature will be useful.