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English (BA)

English professor teaching a class

Write your success story at USF.

Why Study English?

What can you do with an English degree? Quite a bit! Critical thinking, communication and creativity are essential assets in nearly every field. Majoring in English boosts these and other practical skills important in the modern workplace:

  • Understanding other perspectives
  • Researching and assessing information
  • Writing persuasively
  • Adapting to changing circumstances
  • Developing empathy and self-awareness

Words matter. And they are everywhere. Mastering language will prepare you for a range of positions in advertising, journalism, marketing, business, research, healthcare, biotechnology, government, education and many other industries.

An English degree, with its attention to research, writing and making compelling arguments, also is excellent preparation for law school and other rigorous graduate programs.

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Career Outlook & Success

#2

Best Job in Media and Creative Arts - Technical Writing (US News & World Report, 2020)

$62,000

Average annual salary for technical writers in Indiana (BLS, 2019)

8.5%

growth rate expected for technical writers through 2029 (BLS.gov)

Why USF for English?

The University of Saint Francis celebrates the liberal arts. You’ll read great literature and diverse voices with dedicated scholars who are ready to help you connect the books you love to contemporary society.

You’ll learn the fundamentals of writing, explore a range of literary topics and time periods and learn how to write in professional settings. A rich selection of literature and creative writing electives means you can dive deeper into genres, writing styles, authors and areas that interest you most. Some student favorites include:

  • Young Adult (YA) Literature
  • Literature and the Natural Environment
  • Science Fiction
  • The Rhetoric of Social Protest
  • Literature in Health & Wellness
  • Feminist Literature
  • Addiction Narratives
  • True Crime Stories

Franciscan values of faith and reason are central to the USF educational experience. By virtue of learning in a community like ours, you’ll develop into a grounded, ethical, empathetic professional.

Real-World Learning Experiences

Bringing literature to life through a stage play. Producing a journal full of your classmates’ creative writing. Discovering how writers contributed to major social movements through an independent research project. These are just a few of the many ways English majors at USF learn by doing.

Internships: Gain Professional Experience

Get an up close look at possible English major careers while immersing yourself in a professional setting. Your faculty mentors can help you find an internship opportunity that fits your interests.

Community Engagement: Learn While Serving Others

Helping others is a way of life at USF. Our English faculty members find exciting ways to embed service-learning into class. A recent highlight: Students in the Marginalized Voices course collaborated on a storytelling project with The Center for Nonviolence and the YWCA.

Campus Publications: Join the Sullivan Staff

Put your love for words and keen eye for detail to good use by helping produce the campus literary journal, The Sullivan.

Writing Center: Help Your Classmates

Work as a writing consultant for the campus Writing Center.

Visiting Authors: Meet and Learn from Renowned Writers

Our Visiting Authors series brings novelists, poets, memoirists, journalists, essayists and other successful writers to campus. We’ve welcomed wordsmiths such as Kaveh Akbar, Leila Chatti, Matt Hart, Michael Martone, Adrian Matejka.

Meet Our Faculty

Among the literature-loving faculty members who will inspire you are:

Dr. Ken A. Bugajski is an expert in British literature, autobiography and gender in literature — and you can also find him cheering on the TinCaps during baseball season.

Dr. Ashleigh Hardin’s research interests include narrative studies, business writing and film — and when she’s not in the classroom, she enjoys true crime podcasts, video games and knitting.

Dr. Michael Levan teaches world literature, first year-writing and the occasional creative writing courses. Otherwise, you can find him spending time with his wife, son and two daughters, living and dying with his Cleveland sports teams, or writing.

Dr. Annmarie Steffes specializes in Victorian drama, performance and women writers — and she loves concerts and aspires to visit all of the U.S. National Parks.

Professor Weston Cutter specializes in creative writing and inequality studies – and when not engaged with those, he’s usually reading books, writing books, or is outside with his wife and three daughters.

Campus Involvement

You’ll find plenty of ways to get involved with our close-knit campus community, and this includes joining clubs that fit your career interests. As an English major you might like:

  • American Advertising Federation
  • Communications and Public Relations Society
  • Student Activities Council
  • The Sullivan (literary magazine)
Group of USF students studying in a group in the library.

What Can You Do With an English Degree? Write your own career success story!

The versatility of this major — and the in-demand soft skills it develops — opens you up to an incredible amount of opportunities. Positions you might find include:

  • Multimedia journalist
  • Content writer
  • Copywriter
  • Brand journalist
  • Copy editor
  • PR specialist
  • Technical writer
  • Research assistant
  • Paralegal
  • English teacher

Throughout my time in the English program, I’ve not only strengthened my reading and writing skills, but I have developed a deeper understanding of humanity. I have interacted with texts that discuss issues that people have pondered for ages, and I have learned how I can be an active participant in these discussions as well.

Jordan Wells ’21

English Major Careers: Where You’ll Find Our Graduates

Our English alumni communicate, tell stories, teach, write, edit, create and serve others in a wide range of positions and organizations, including:

  • Account Coordinator, Sweetwater
  • Managing Editor, Our Sunday Visitor
  • Associate Attorney, The Law Office of Colleen White
  • Communications Coordinator – Lutheran Health Network
  • Marketing Manager, Biogenetix
  • Head of Brand Development, The Society Management
  • Associate Professor of English, Indiana Institute of Technology
  • Senior Editor/Multimedia Specialist – Briljent
  • Paralegal – Allen County Prosecutor’s Office
  • Professor of English, Frostburg State University

Graduate School & Other Opportunities

Some USF graduates are inspired to enter the world of research and academia and pursue graduate and doctoral degrees, and a major in English is also an excellent foundation for law school. Our alumni have been accepted into programs such as:

  • American University – MA in Journalism and Public Affairs
  • Ball State University – Ph.D. in American Literature
  • The Citadel – MA in English Language and Literature/Letters
  • Florida Coastal School of Law – JD of Law
  • Indiana Wesleyan University – MA in Counselor Education
  • Marquette University – Ph.D. in Literature
  • Ohio University – MA in English
  • University of Chicago – MA in Medieval Studies
  • Wayne State – MA in English

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Academic Plan

An academic plan is a general blueprint showing how one might complete the degree, semester by semester. Get an idea on what each semester could look like.

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