Why study German? Here are several reasons to learn this language, a close cousin of English:
1. Business/Economics. Despite its relatively small area (roughly the size of Montana), Germany was only recently overtaken by China as the major exporting country in the world. Germany is the engine of the European economy, and its many multinational corporations (Siemens; Volkswagen) and numerous universities offer many opportunities for students of international business and commerce.
2. Film. German Expressionism is the single most important and influential tradition in the history of silent film, leaving its stylistic mark on American horror and detective films. The New German Cinema of the 1970s became an international critical favorite, and two directors from that movement, Werner Herzog and Wim Wenders, continue to make award-winning films in both Germany and the USA.
3. Music. German speaking composers dominate the classical canon (Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert), and were pioneers in modern electronic music (Stockhausen). Today, Berlin is the techno capital of the world. Germany has a number of world famous music schools, which continue to foster the discipline of classical music, while the contemporary music scene remains among the most vibrant in the world.
4. Philosophy/Theology. The German contribution to Western philosophy (Kant, Hegel, Marx, Nietzsche, Heidegger) is rivaled only by the ancient Greeks. German thinkers have been major contributors to Christian theology, Biblical studies, and to comparative religion from the Middle Ages into the 21st century.