Are you curious about other cultures? Feel like you can help people by using your language skills? Interested in taking your career goals to the next level by getting a degree in Spanish?

Through this interdisciplinary study of language, literature, culture, history and contemporary issues, you’ll gain a significant global understanding that will make you a sought-after candidate in many career fields. Consider combining Spanish with another major or minor to give you an additional edge in the workplace.

of spanish majors study abroad
  • Spanish is the second most widely spoken language in the world
  • 10% of Central students complete a Spanish minor

The Real World


Successful Careers

  • Program officer, Iowa Commission on Volunteer Service
  • U.S. Department of State
  • Special Agent, Division of Narcotics Enforcement and the Division of Criminal Investigation
  • Spanish teacher, Ankeny Centennial High School
  • Spanish teacher, Taejon Christian International School in South Korea
  • Legislative staff, Illinois Capitol Building
  • Auxiliar de Conversacion, Junta de Extremadura, Zafra, Spain
  • Product cost accountant, John Deere Power Systems
  • Child/dependent adult protective assessment worker, Iowa Dept. of Human Services


  • Spanish club
  • Spanish language house

Shelby Palm

Shelby Palm

"I would love to teach in a diverse school district with students of all backgrounds gathering in my classroom to learn Spanish language and culture."

Read More

Graduate Placement

  • American University, Washington, D.C. 
  • University of Arizona, Tucson 
  • Universityof Notre Dame
  • Bowling Green State University


  • Department of Latino Affairs, Des Moines 
  • Iowa Refugee Support Project
  • U.S. Center for Citizen Diplomacy, Des Moines
  • John Deere Power Systems
  • Atlantic Council 
  • Students have also served with the Peace Corps and AmeriCorps VISTA

Courses & Faculty

Central's Spanish major is designed to provide students with a variety of ways to improve their language skills. On-campus courses include laboratory sessions with native or advanced Spanish speakers, and students can choose to live in the Spanish language house. All courses aim to increase language proficiency and cultural awareness. Students are also required to study abroad in Spain or Mexico.

First-year students who have studied Spanish in high school take a placement exam to determine the appropriate course level for them to begin their Spanish studies at Central. Students can earn “credit by placement” for testing in beyond the first semester and completing the appropriate course with a C or better.

Learn more about Spanish in the course catalog.

Spanish  photo
Meet the faculty:
  • Kathy Korcheck, B.S., M.A., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Spanish, interest areas include contemporary literature, film of Spain, documentary film and memory studies
  • Allison Krogstad, B.A., M.A., Ph.D., Professor of Spanish, interest areas include Latin American studies, indigenous studies, Latin American literature, colonial studies, creative writing and service learning
  • Samuel Mate-Kodjo, B.A., M.A., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Spanish
  • Oscar Reynaga, B.A., M.A., Lecturer of Spanish, interest areas include Latin American and Latina/o literature, Mexican and Chicano/a literature and cultural studies, film theory and media studies

Sample Schedule

First year
  • Begin at highest level of proficiency based on placement test score
  • Core courses and/or electives
Sophomore year
  • Continue to the next highest level
  • Core courses and/or electives
Junior year
  • Advanced Spanish: Grammar, Composition and Conversation I and II
  • Introduction to Hispanic Literature
  • Core courses and/or electives
  • or study abroad
Senior year
  • Study abroad
  • and/or senior capstone course
  • Core courses and/or electives

The Central Difference

Stretch Your Language Skills Further by Studying Abroad

As a Spanish major, you’ll be required to spend at least one semester studying abroad. So in addition to learning to speak, listen, read and write in Spanish, you’ll have the opportunity to gain personal knowledge about the various cultures that make up the Spanish-speaking world, including Granada, Spain, and Merida, Yucatan. Learn more about Central’s study-abroad programs.

Central College Spanish Students

Compete for Valuable Scholarships

Central offers Spanish scholarships of up to $1,500 for all students (majors and non-majors) interested in foreign language studies at the college level.

Learn in Multilingual Facilities

Consider staying in the Language Houses in the Wing International Center. They offer a unique living alternative for language majors, those returning from a semester abroad or anyone who wants a chance to use French, German or Spanish on a daily basis, celebrate native holidays, share experiences and sample diverse foods. International language assistants from Mexico, Spain, Austria and France also live in these townhouses along with Central College students.

Learn More

Want to find out more about Spanish at Central? Contact us to learn more about this major and our other strong academic programs. Visit campus to observe classes and experience The Central Difference firsthand.