What Can I Do with My English Major?

Overview

Students majoring in English have the opportunity to explore an extraordinary range of texts and diverse critical methods for engaging and analyzing those texts. The major allows students to select from a large variety of courses that attend to the complexity of texts in their historical, cultural, and formal contexts. All English courses have as a goal the development of students’ abilities as close readers and cogent writers.

Students will find in the English major a focus on those personal, social, and cultural concerns that are central to the goals of an undergraduate education, that enhance their personal growth, and that prepare them for responsible participation as citizens in a democracy. Students will also find a strong grounding for continued study in graduate school as well as valuable preparation for those professions and professional schools – for example, law, medicine, business – that require critical thinking, interpretive sophistication, awareness of
cultural issues, and effective speaking and writing.

The English major prepares students for many different kinds of jobs. It offers an intellectually enriching preparation for entry-level positions in a variety of careers and provides students with a strong foundation for graduate work in law, education, business, and medicine.

Skills

The study of English facilitates the development of a core set of skills sought after by employers in a wide range of occupational settings. A sampling of representative skills and abilities follows.

Research

  • Gathering information
  • Using a variety of resources
  • Interpreting data
  • Original analysis
  • Defining problems
  • Summarizing and presenting information
  • Understanding personal, social and cultural dynamics

Critical Thinking

  • Reading critically
  • Thinking independently
  • Recognizing unnoticed patterns and structures
  • Understanding components of complex problems
  • Offering diverse perspectives
  • Synthesizing themes

Communication

  • Comparing/contrasting interpretations
  • Language skills
  • Summarizing ideas
  • Writing effectively
  • Conveying complex information
  • Editing
  • Articulating ideas/theories
  • Creating persuasive arguments
  • Using precise language

Sample Internship Opportunities

  • Offices of Congressional Representatives
  • Media (e.g., MSNBC, CNN, National Geographic Channel, College Fanz Sports Network)
  • Publishing (e.g., Oxford University Press, Teacher Magazine)
  • Political Committees
  • Legal Firms and Agencies (e.g., the Federal Emergency Management Agency, NAACP Legal Defense Fund)
  • Journalism (e.g., The Washington Post, Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News, Francis Ford Coppola Presents)
  • Nonprofit Agencies (e.g., SeaWeb, Peace Corps)
  • Literary Agencies (e.g., Gail Ross Literary Agency)

Where are Georgetown English Majors Now?

  • Editorial Assistant
  • Journalist
  • Public relations assistant
  • Television reporter
  • Publisher/Editor
  • Screenwriter
  • IT content manager
  • Public relations associate
  • Radio production assistant
  • Literary agent
  • Financial analyst
  • Technical writer
  • Advertising copy writer
  • Market research analyst
  • Professor
  • Consultant
  • Human resources manager
  • Teacher, secondary
  • Admissions representative
  • Legislative assistant
  • Research analyst
  • Audio-video specialist
  • Social worker
  • Speech writer
  • Fundraising coordinator
  • Paralegal
  • Legislative advocate
  • Librarian
  • Grant writer
  • Corrective therapist
  • Probation and parole officer
  • Musician
  • Pastry chef
  • Freelance writer
  • Attorney
  • Writing Center Director
  • Copywriter

Relevant Websites and Publications

Professional Organizations

For information about career options, internship and full-time opportunities, contact the Career Education Center at One Leavey Center, (202) 687-3493. For more information about the major and degree requirements, visit the Department of English website or at (202) 687-7435.