In an increasingly globalized world, the study of foreign languages, literatures and cultures plays an integral role in a liberal arts education. Language learning provides students a means to understand and appreciate the diverse values and beliefs of other nations and peoples, and to see these as a result of particular linguistic, social, cultural and historical contexts. This insight leads students to see themselves as a product of their own contextual realities. It also helps them to understand complex cultural dynamics and diversity, which promotes a nonjudgmental world view. As a result, students grow not only as foreign language users, but also as sensitive cultural speakers who can critically assess themselves and interact with others with an open mind. Such an education is in accordance with Siena College’s mission which “affirms the unique worth of each person and the responsibility of individuals to cooperate in the creation of a just and peaceful society.”
"No culture can live, if it attempts to be exclusive"
-Mohandas K. Gandhi, Indian nationalist and spiritual leader