The department offers several courses in Polish language and culture which give important insight into the thousand-year history of this fascinating and rapidly developing member of the new Europe. The sixth most populous country in the European Union and economically the sixth largest, Poland has one of the fastest rising economies in the world. Polish, a heritage claimed by more than a million Canadians and now the second most widely spoken language in England, is also an official language of the European Union. Thanks to a recently created private fund established by the Polish community of Ottawa, beginning in the fall of 2015 a Visiting Professor from Poland will assist in offering additional courses of study. Polish, along with Russian, serves to enhance the work of The Slavic Research Group of the University of Ottawa.