the palais de rumine

Central, Eastern and Northern European Studies

UBC's Department of Central, Eastern and Northern European Studies is your gateway to the cultures and languages of some of Europe's most dynamic regions. Our degree programs create opportunities to apply your newly developed skills in public and private sector jobs both within Canada and abroad. 

Our Minor in Scandinavian Studies allows you to supplement your major field of study with courses that focus on one of the most vibrant and innovative regions in Europe. The Vikings, Nordic design, immigration, and diplomacy are only a few that add to the complex image of this dynamic region. We offer language study in Danish and Swedish as well as courses on literature, film, and culture.

Our Slavic Program offers a Russian Minor: Graduates with this specialization are accepted into many graduate programs. Typically, our students aim for academic careers and choose either a graduate program in Russian, Comparative Literature, or Modern European Studies. Other career choices for our graduates include journalism, politics, government jobs, as well as careers in broadcasting, translation, or international agencies.

Our German Program offers a German Major, a German Minor and a German Studies Minor. German is one of the world’s major languages with approximately 100 million native speakers and a further 20 million non-native speakers. As the second most spoken language within the European Union, German provides access to the European business and professional community, including opportunities in such diverse fields as international commerce, publishing, journalism, translation and tourism. Moreover, it is the second most commonly employed language within science and engineering.

Get experience at UBC

Building your career takes more than academics. Complement your studies with relevant experiences. Whether you choose one of the experiences below that are particularly suited for Art History students, or one of the many other great opportunities available, you’ll learn new things, make new friends, network, and set yourself apart. It all counts.

Go Global

Imagine student life in Lund; biking to class with friends in the morning, and exploring this medieval city through student festivals and carnivals in the evening. Perhaps you would like to learn to speak Swedish at Uppsala University or even learn all about current the newest German terms and catchphrases in the lakeside city of Konstanz. You could even take a quick weekend trip to the Swiss Alps all in time to make it back to your German film class on Monday morning. You can immerse yourself in different languages and cultures with Go Global, all while finishing your degree. exchange to internships and global seminars, check out the range of international experiences.

Our recommended exchange destinations for CENES students include, but are not limited to:

  • Danish Institute for Study AbroadUniversity of Iceland
  • University of Copenhagen (Denmark)
  • Uppsala University (Sweden)
  • Lund University (Sweden)
  • Humboldt University of Berlin (Germany)
  • Konstanz University (Germany)
  • University of Oslo (Norway)

Arts Co-op Progam

Put your language skills and cultural knowledge to work for you. Gaining paid, full-time experience will help you explore careers in non-profits and community organizations, arts organizations, education, government, and the private sector with employers across Canada and abroad. Graduate with career skills, experience, and a network of professional contacts that will give you a competitive edge after graduation.

Arts Internship Program

Build a career while you are studying through part-time, unpaid internships designed with Arts students in mind. Exciting internships are being created at non-profits and social service organizations. Apply your valuable intercultural understanding and language skills to the world of work and gain industry contacts along the way. Exciting internships available at museums, cultural centres, and non-profit organizations.

Using your degree

Graduates of CENES will have developed and honed skills that are of value to employers across the job spectrum. Arts and media theory, superior oral and written communications, research, cultural awareness, and second language acquisition are all skills that can be applied to any field of work. 

Career possibilities

Foreign Service Officer

Foreign Service Officers are designated either Political Economic or Commercial Economic. The position has a special role in representing Canada at Embassies, High Commissions around the world and at permanent missions to international organizations such as the WTO and the UN. Foreign Service officers agree to “rotationality”, meaning they are based in Ottawa but agree to be assigned to work overseas as part of his or her career path. 

Language Specialists and Teachers

There are multiple options for work in this field including, interpreter (spoken word), translator (written word) and teacher/lecturer, specifically in secondary education or above, and teaching English as a second language both in Canada and abroad.

More possibilities:

International Logistics Management
Public Relations
Diplomatic Corps Services
Art Dealer
Communications Consultant
Cultural Consultant
Event Planner
Foreign Business Consultant
Fundraising Coordinator
Historical Site Guide
Human Resources Specialist
Industrial Relations Consultant
International Aid Director
International Brand Strategist
International Development
Legal Aid Worker
Market Researcher
Marketing Director
Media Correspondent
Non-Profit Organization Director
Public Policy Analyst
Retail Strategist or Buyer
Social Program Director
Speech Writer
Travel Industry Specialist

Academic possibilities

A CENES degree prepares students for further study in a variety of fields including: 

Germanic Studies
Art History
Classical Studies

Alumni profiles