The Spanish program at Holy Cross offers dynamic opportunities for learning the second most widely spoken language in the world and exploring the rich variety of Hispanic and Latino literatures, cultures, and cinemas both on campus and afield.
“fósforo,” a bilingual journal of literature, art and ideas, publishes poetry, narrative, drama, and essay, as well as photography, painting, and visual arts, which reflect an interest in Spanish and the range of Hispanic and Latinx cultures. Submissions are accepted in both Spanish and English from all members of the campus community, including students, faculty, staff, and alumni.
Uni2ACT is a bilingual theatre troupe housed in the Spanish department. The troupe welcomes any students with any level of Spanish, from native speakers to beginners. The group writes and performs original plays that deal directly, honestly and compassionately with issues of identity and inclusion on campus and beyond. No prior acting experience is necessary.
Our faculty and students also consistently engage with Spanish-speaking cultures outside the classroom through community-based learning opportunities and service learning locally and abroad.
Directed Independent Spanish Curriculum
In 1995, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation provided the Holy Cross with a unique opportunity to develop a self-paced language curriculum that would ultimately challenge both faculty and students to re-examine how people learn languages. More specifically, the college was asked to consider how technology might be exploited to the benefit of all concerned, facilitating the development of language competency while reducing the financial burden typically associated with the small classes required for language teaching.
Today, the Directed Independent Spanish Curriculum (DISC) at Holy Cross offers Spanish students an opportunity to personalize their language learning experience. Students work individually on course materials which include textbooks, video, CD-ROM, and the Internet. Students also meet one or two hours each week with native speakers to practice oral communication and communicate regularly with faculty.
The ideal DISC student is someone who works well independently and is not afraid of using technology. Courses are designed to help those students who come to college with prior experience in Spanish or other languages by offering them an opportunity to identify their strengths and improve upon their weaknesses; facilitating their integration into more advanced language courses. DISC also welcomes other highly motivated individuals who are interested in learning the Spanish language.
- Elementary Spanish I
- Elementary Spanish II
- Intensive Elementary Spanish
- Intermediate Spanish I
- Intermediate Spanish II
- Medical Spanish
Events and Hands-On Cultural Enrichment
The Spanish department offers a complementary cultural enrichment program, run by faculty and FLAs, that engages students with the cultures they study. Activities include:
- cooking classes
- creative writing workshops
- cultural discussions with native speakers and study abroad veterans
- movie nights and film series
- tutoring through the department's Spanish Writing Workshop
- visual arts exhibits
Spanish majors are encouraged to pursue internships in a variety of contexts. Students have interned with the Latino History Project of Worcester, at the Office of Congressman James McGovern, and at local hospitals.
Opportunities for students to pursue research projects under faculty guidance, at either student or faculty initiative, include Cineglos and Cinegogía (see below). Spanish majors also participate regularly in the annual Academic Conference and the College Honors Program.
Cineglos is a web-based Spanish-language audiovisual glossary of film techniques and cinematographic keywords accompanied by video clips from Latin American and Spanish films. The website was created by Professor Bridget Franco and her research students.
Cinegogía is an open-access website devoted to the teaching and study of Latin American cinemas. This collaborative project is comprised of syllabi, film guides, course materials, a film database and links to other resources. The website was created by Professor Bridget Franco and students frequently serve as research assistants to help expand the site’s collection of materials.
Sigma Delta Pi Honor Society
Sigma Delta Pi, the National Collegiate Hispanic Honor Society, honors exceptional academic achievement in the Spanish major. The largest foreign-language honor society in existence, Sigma Delta Pi is also among the elite, as attested by its membership since 1966 in the Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS), the nation’s only certifying agency for college and university honor societies.
Students inducted into the Holy Cross chapter of Sigma Delta Pi are offered unique opportunities to promote the study of Spanish on campus:
- Members serve as tutors in the Spanish Writing Workshop, a peer tutorial service open to students of Spanish.
- Members are invited to join the editorial board of “fósforo,” Holy Cross’s bilingual journal of literature, art and ideas, published annually by the chapter.
- Members collaborate in promoting cultural activities on Hispanic themes.
Sigma Delta Pi offers a scholarship program exclusively for its active members with annual undergraduate awards for summer study in Spain, Mexico, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia, and research grants for graduate students.
Requirements for Admission to Sigma Delta Pi
- GPA of 3.3 in Spanish courses above the intermediate level
- GPA of 3.3 overall
- Completion of 2 literature courses in Spanish at Holy Cross or abroad
- Declaration of Spanish major
For more information about Sigma Delta Pi at Holy Cross, contact Professor Estrella Cibreiro.
¡Ven a conocernos! HC Spanish Club is a cultural and leisure organization that welcomes anyone at Holy Cross, whatever their knowledge or interest in Spanish, to gain a deeper perspective on the rich cultures of Latin America and Spain in a fun and dynamic way.
El Club de Español de HC es una organización cultural y de ocio que invita a cualquier miembro de la comunidad de College of the Holy Cross, independientemente de su nivel o interés en español, a profundizar su perspectiva sobre la riqueza cultural de la Latinoamérica y España mediante actividades dinámicas y divertidas.
As a complement to our international curricular focus, the Spanish department takes full advantage of the Holy Cross study abroad programs in Spain and Latin America, incorporating coursework abroad into the major requirements and encouraging 100 percent participation among our majors.
Teacher Education Program
The Teacher Education Program (TEP) at Holy Cross prepares students for licensure in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Students majoring in biology, chemistry, classics, English, French, history, mathematics, physics, Spanish and visual arts are eligible to apply to the program. In addition to taking courses in the major, students enroll in education courses specifically designed to promote excellence in teaching.
The Holy Cross TEP places a special emphasis on issues surrounding urban education.
Visit the Teacher Education Program site for more information.