Spanish is the most common first language in the Americas, and Spanish speakers also can be found in Spain, in much of the United States, the Philippines, and even Africa.
According to the most recent Census Bureau statistics, 13 percent of the United States population is of Hispanic origin, making it the fastest growing minority in the country.
Spanish and English are in a virtual dead heat to be the second most spoken language in the world. As of 1999, Spanish had 332 million speakers, while English had 322 million. They were far behind Chinese, with 885 million.
As of 1998, the United States is the nation with the fifth largest Hispanic population, about 30 million people.
Because the birth rate in the Spanish speaking world is higher than among people whose first language is English, Spanish can be expected to remain firmly in the No. 2 spot for years to come.
Learning a World language (and especially Spanish for those of us in the United States) opens up great travel possibilities.
As far as careers go, in the United States today there is almost no career that you could enter where your Spanish wouldn't come in handy sometime. Not only in places such as California, Texas, Florida and New York are there sizable Spanish populations, but almost everywhere. In almost all of the helping services (teaching and health care among them) you can expand your options by learning Spanish. Many other types of business are reaching out to Spanish speakers as well.