Helen Kneale

ArtSci' 09 - BAH in German and Italian

Helen graduated from Queen's University in 2009 with a B.A. (Honours) in German and Italian, receiving a medal for both languages as well as an International Studies Certificate. She was able to spend her third year abroad at the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität in Freiburg, Germany. Upon returning to Kingston, Helen acted as a DAAD (Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst) Young Ambassador encouraging prospective exchange students to choose Germany as a study destination. Throughout her studies at Queen's, Helen was a recipient of numerous awards, including Alvera Salute Lundquist Memorial Scholarship for Italian and the Susan Near Prize in German, and has been on the Dean's Honours List with Distinction for four years straight. Knowledge of languages has an immense value for her:

Helen Kneale

"My degree in Languages at Queen’s University has been a springboard for me into a world of international opportunities. After completing my B.A. (Honours) in German and Italian (2009) – where I was fortunate to participate in an unforgettable third-year exchange to Germany – I entered into a trilingual Master’s program in International Relations in Strasbourg, France and completed an internship with UNICEF in Beirut, Lebanon. I was, thanks to my multilingual background, subsequently recruited as a flight attendant by a commercial airline based in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, which allowed for extensive travel and cross-cultural learning opportunities.

I am currently in my final year at McGill University’s Faculty of Law, where my passion for foreign languages remains relevant. For example, I have been able to assist service users at the Legal Information Clinic at McGill (where I am currently the Community Services Director) in a variety of languages, and I have translated centuries-old German doctrinal writings for a constitutional law essay that I wrote in my second year. The research and analytical skills that I acquired during my degree at Queen’s have been invaluable to me throughout my Law degree at McGill, where both rigorous attention to detail and cross-cultural perspectives are required daily.

I would highly recommend the study of languages at Queen’s University to students interested in learning about « the other » and expanding their own cultural horizons. Learning languages is about more than conjugating verbs (which is still important!). It is about gaining a new perspective. The Queen’s professors I had were inspirational and are still my academic role models; the curriculum I experienced was challenging and stimulating; and the opportunities endless. My experiences are just one example of what doors a degree in Languages from Queen’s University may open."