Career Preparation

Outstanding professional preparation

The Spanish and Portuguese graduate program offers students solid professional preparation, gaining in concert with the opportunity for exploration and intellectual growth.

Our graduate students come from a plurality of ethnic and national backgrounds. They receive close mentorship and leave with a degree that prepares them for dynamic academic careers as scholars, teachers, and researchers. Our department offers professional workshops and colloquia on publishing, teaching, and interview preparation. These professional development resources contribute to our consistent record of competitive academic job placement.

In addition, regular series of works-in-progress presentations allow our graduate students to develop sustained research agendas and ready themselves for conference participation. Travel funds are available to students to present their papers at conferences in the U.S. and abroad.

Additional departmental and campus initiatives to assist students’ professional development include:

  • workshops on teaching portfolios, diversity statement, and creating a syllabus through the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (
  • workshops and individual consultation sessions to help develop a strong graduate school plan and planning for graduation through the Graduate School and Assistant Vice-Provost for Student Development (
  • weekly departmental dissertation writing workshop
  • the department’s Academic Job Market workshop series with faculty covering topics, such as C.V.s, cover letters, research statements, and interviews
  • the department’s annual workshops on M.A. exams, doctoral exams, writing a dissertation proposal, and teaching your first literature/linguistics course
  •  facilitating contact with campus-wide Dissertation Writing Support Groups and counseling:
  • monthly colloquium and Brown Bag talks in both the Hispanic Literatures and Culture Program and the Linguistics Program

Job placement

Our program has a strong job placement record, with recent Ph.D. graduates securing tenure track positions at prestigious institutions, including the University of Michigan, University of New Mexico, University of Pittsburgh, University of Virginia, SUNY Albany, and others.

Students who pursue graduate studies in Spanish and Portuguese have gone into careers with top academic and research institutions, the United Nations, the World Bank, non-governmental organizations, media, private entrepreneurship, and the military and intelligence communities.

View partial list of placements