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Overview

Students learn about English careers

Students learn about careers for English majors.

Students are often drawn to English because they enjoy great literature. The English degree can also be a pathway to a rewarding career: through reading masterworks of literature, students become more articulate as they develop skills in writing, research, political and cultural analysis, and critical thinking.

Benefits of the English Major

The English major prepares students for graduate school in English, but it is also a preferred major for students entering graduate programs in law, journalism, education, publishing, comparative literature, and several other disciplines. English majors pursue careers as college professors, publishers, journalists, secondary school teachers, and creative writers, but also as legislators, foreign service specialists, speech writers, public relations specialists, systems analysts, advertisers, grant writers, and entrepreneurs, among other professions. Business leaders consistently rank communication and analytical skills as among the most important qualities for college graduates to possess. For students who wish to work and travel abroad after graduation, the major can lead to jobs teaching English in other countries where students develop language skills that will further propel their careers.

The English Major at Penn State Greater Allegheny

English majors may opt to complete their Bachelor of Arts in English at Penn State Greater Allegheny, or to spend their first two years at the campus and then transfer elsewhere. The requirements for the English degree are identical to those for the English major at University Park and other Penn State campuses; thus, the transition within the Penn State system is very smooth. At Penn State Greater Allegheny, most classes for the major will have no more than 25 students. They are taught by published professors who can provide students with individual attention. The English faculty at Penn State Greater Allegheny is composed of scholars, book authors, award-winning teachers, editors, world travelers, a published poet, a professional theatre performer, and a Boston Marathon runner. English majors have full access to Penn State’s extensive research libraries.

Activities for English Majors

In addition to taking a variety of thought-provoking courses in American, British, and global literatures in English, students can also act as creative writers, photographers, and editors for Penn State Greater Allegheny’s literary and visual art journal. Students can engage in the campus as actors, set designers, or crewmembers in plays performed each semester on campus. They can present research projects at our Teaching International Student Conference. Students can travel with English faculty to places such as Paris, Normandy, the Cannes Film Festival, Wales, Ireland, Vietnam, and Puerto Rico, or to other Penn State programs abroad. They can write for the campus newspaper, run for student government, or help to operate our campus radio station. They will also be able to experience the excitement of Pittsburgh’s vibrant cultural life.

How to Contact Us

For questions, please contact Professor MaryEllen Higgins, the English Program Coordinator, at mxh68@psu.edu or at 412-675-9461. Her web page is at www.personal.psu.edu/mxh68.