The study of foreign languages develops students’ understanding of themselves as world citizens and an appreciation for the world through the study of languages and literatures, linguistics and cultural phenomena. The French minor is designed for students with an interest in French and Francophone people and organizations. It develops skills needed to communicate with native speakers of French, learn critical and theoretical approaches to texts and build cross-cultural perspectives from which to evaluate global issues.

Students gain a cultural understanding of the French-speaking world and its diversity, and they are introduced to current international issues. Topics examined in French courses can appeal to students interested not only in international affairs, but also in business, medicine, law, women’s studies, history, education, literature, cinema, the arts and environmental issues.

Individual courses provide students with opportunities to connect with French-speaking cultures through texts and other documents, and interact with each other and with native speakers of French using technology and social media.

Ripon College offers majors in foreign languages and in Spanish; and minors in Classical Studies; Ancient, Renaissance and Medieval Studies; Francophone studies; French; and Spanish.

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One-act play by Anne Negri ’03 will be presented this weekend

A one-act play by Anne Negri ’03 will be produced Thursday through Sunday at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. “Not a Test” addresses […]


Dominique Poncelet

Poncelet, Dominique

Professor of French and Francophone Studies


Ripon College faculty and professional staff are dedicated to helping you reach your goals, whatever they may be and however often they may change along the way. It’s part of our value statement to you.

As a student at Ripon, you will be assigned a faculty adviser based on your area(s) of interest. You will meet with your faculty adviser throughout your time as a student to discuss your current aspirations, plan your course schedule and plot a future trajectory. We also work collaboratively with Ripon College Career and Professional Development to help match your interests and skills to concrete goals and construct a plan for professional success offering personalized career counseling, off-campus learning opportunities and an online job board with potential to connect with local, national and international employers. Our collaboration with Student Support Services provides tutoring and additional academic and skill development, as well as tools to help with note-taking, exam preparation, goal-setting and time management. Likewise, Mentors in the Franzen Center provide in-depth, one-on-one or group mentoring for students about class projects and college-level writing, and can share problem-solving strategies to overcome academic obstacles.

Advising at Ripon


20 credits in coursework in French above FRE 111, starting with the course in which students are placed by the online placement evaluation. FRE 111 does not count toward the French minor. Students minoring in French must take at least one 300-level course taught entirely in French and are strongly encouraged to take more than one of these courses. Course work completed in a French-speaking country, either through an In Focus course or a Ripon College-approved study-abroad program, may be applied toward the French minor upon approval by the members of the French program. Students should consult with their advisor in French before departure about possible courses of study. Four retroactive credits may count toward the minor. Dominique Poncelet is the advisor for the minor in French.

Career Tracks

Foreign language study can lead to careers in a variety of areas, including government, industry and commerce, travel and tourism, interpretation/translation, service, education, arts, media and entertainment.

Some French, Latin and Spanish graduates from Ripon College have gone on to graduate work in their languages. Others have continued their studies in other fields, such as communication studies, nonprofit management, international relations, medicine school, public policy and theology.

Unique Opportunities

  • Placement in French courses is determined by an online evaluation that may be taken at any time, preferably before registration.
  • Through the Department of Educational Studies, teaching certification in French is available in early childhood/adolescence (birth-grade 12).
  • College faculty members regularly lead Liberal Arts In Focus study and other travel experiences.