Having been an English major for my entire college career thus far, I am used to the infamous question, “What are you going to do with THAT?” It’s not necessarily from fellow students or professors, because we’re all in the same whirlwind of a boat in terms of deciding what to do with our lives, but it’s definitely something I’ve heard far too many times! Here’s a list of growing opportunities for us scholars who enjoy the occasional Milton poem or NPR news article:
5) Writer for Digital Media – I personally share articles on Facebook via Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, and The Onion almost on a daily basis. Why is this field so lucrative? People love their satire, their world news, and their lists concerning 18 GIFs that will restore their faith in humanity. Working for such a company, however, is not simply about creating quizzes that reveal which Disney prince is your soul mate. This kind of writing requires correct articulation, research, and analytics in terms of what readers want, and a strong social media presence. Take a look at some of the work that our digital media marketing class did with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra.
4) Communications Officer – Interested in influencing public policy, or even speech writing? Local and federal government officials are seeking applicants with strong, transferable skills in creativity, critical thinking, and marketing, which English majors almost undoubtedly have.
3) Editor – The title may be somewhat broad, but if you’re a grammar pun enthusiast, or instinctively know when a piece of writing is going to flourish, this is the career for you! Editors can work at various magazines, online newspapers, publishing companies, or even as freelance employees. If you’re interested in being an editor, you can get a job on-campus in our writing center.
2) Educator – Sure, English teacher is the first career people may think of when they hear about your major, but why should it be discounted? I know plenty of education majors who specialize in English, and they have had incredible student teaching experiences that turned into permanent positions as educators. Higher education is an additionally profitable field, monetarily and in terms of the rewards you could get from students and fellow teachers. Personally, I want to get my Master’s degree in higher education and work in university admissions; the possibilities aren’t necessarily limited!
1) Technical Writer – Professors, government officials, and brand strategists are all looking for communicators to assist with the composition of grants and other important documents. The abilities that an English major has to read into data and persuade readers could control the money an educator receives for a research project, for instance.
So, in conclusion, don’t be afraid to read British literature or annotate an interesting article. If those things are to your liking, then consider becoming an English major, because it will expand your horizons and develop your critical thinking skills even further so that when it comes time to apply for jobs, you will not feel unqualified.