Careers for Asian Languages & Literature Majors and Minors

What can you do with a degree from Asian Languages & Literature?

Alumni of our department are valued for their ability to read, interpret, and analyze complex material. They take into their careers the confidence to tackle difficult challenges and unfamiliar situations. From learning how language, an essential human technology, works, they thrive as persuasive and clear communicators. These skills, combined with their proficiency in an Asian language and cultural competency, prepare them to succeed in many fields.

Many students pair their major or minor with a major in another field. Popular options include, business, informatics, computer science, and international studies as well as linguistics and other options in the humanities and social sciences  — or a double major within the department. Whatever they study in addition to their major, our alumni find an advantage in their careers as the importance and influence of Asian economies and cultures continues to grow. Alumni who choose to pursue graduate studies are also aided by our department’s rigorous academics and prestigious reputation.

Sample Alumni Job Titles Sample Alumni Employers
  • Attorney
  • Budget/fiscal analyst
  • Business development manager
  • Data analyst
  • Medical interpreter
  • Program manager
  • Operations supervisor
  • Professor
  • Software engineer
  • Amazon
  • Bank of America
  • Ford Motor Company
  • Microsoft
  • Tableau Software
  • Samsung
  • Smithsonian Institution
  • US Department of Agriculture
  • US Department of State

Alumni Profiles

For more information on alumni outcomes, see the resources below.

  • Alumni News - Read about what our alumni are doing now.
  • There's a Job for That! - Take a quick quiz (only three questions!) to learn what College of Arts & Sciences alumni with similar interests have done since graduating.
  • UW LinkedIn — See career trajectories of UW graduates who studied Asian Languages & Literature as well as other fields.
  • UW Asian L&L LinkedIn - Connect with our department on LinkedIn.


In ASIAN 491: Internship in Teaching Asian Languages and Cultures, advanced language learners work in an undergraduate language class helping lead discussions, develop class materials, and serve as language partners with students. Students taking the internship gain experience teaching and working in a professional environment. Faculty permission is required for the internship, which can be taken for 1-2 credits. For more information, speak to a department adviser.

Career & Job Resources

Our department hosts Career Panels a few times each year, usually in autumn and winter. Check the calendar for upcoming events.

University of Washington offers diverse resources to help students build the skills to launch their careers:

  • C21: Center for 21st Century Liberal Learning — Offers immersive learning experiences, partnerships both on campus and in the community, and a network of mentors to help guide students in the College of Arts & Sciences on the pathway toward selecting a major and preparing for a career after college.
  • Career & Internship Center — Educates and supports students as they explore and choose academic majors and career options, obtain and reflect upon career-related experiences, and develop professional presence and essential skills for workplace success.
  • Carlson Leadership & Public Service Center — Coordinates and connects students to community-based experiences in and around Seattle.

We’ve also assembled some advice for our majors: