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English as an academic discipline encompasses the study of literature, literary/cultural theory, creative writing, professional writing, and linguistics.Contact Info:
Anna Phillips, '15, English literature majorI absolutely love and miss the English Department at UWEC! Many of the faculty in the department were there to aide me when I was still discovering who I was, and who I wanted to be in life. If it were not for many of them, I would not be where I am today.
In English courses, students develop strong critical-thinking and analytical skills; they learn to read with interpretative power and write with fluency, power and precision; and they apply a variety of research strategies and methods. All of these skills make our graduates ideal candidates for a wide variety of jobs.
English department graduates work in various careers and industries as technical writers, editors, research assistants, librarians, freelance writers, public relations officers, managers, fundraisers, English teachers, reading specialists and legal assistants. Some graduates further their education by going on to graduate school to study linguistics, creative writing, literature, rhetoric and composition, law or education.
Graduates praise the investment of faculty and the strong sense of community within the English department. Additionally, the department’s high level of commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusivity has shaped them into well-rounded, global citizens.
The English department’s writing internship program allows students to refine their communication skills and gain valuable professional experience working in local business and nonprofit organizations, including Mayo Clinic Health System, Royal Credit Union, JAMF Software and Western Dairyland Community Action Agency. Of students that graduated in 2016, 59.4% completed internships.
Another opportunity with similar benefits include tutoring in the Center for Writing Excellence. In addition to one-on-one tutoring, students expand their experience by planning workshops, working on faculty-student collaborative projects, and so on.
Embracing diversity and immersing both students and faculty in other cultures is a priority for the English department. 38% of English majors engage in intercultural immersion experiences. For example, a three-week immersion trip to Jamaica takes place in even-yeared Winterim sessions. This trip is based entirely in the English department and focuses on transnationalism and tourism.
English has several vibrant student organizations that allow students to celebrate their love of English language and literatures, serve the English department and the university community, and gain valuable experience. NOTA, in existence for more than 40 years, produces the creative writing and arts magazine of the same name composed entirely of student work. English Fest, our events planning group, hosts several events throughout the year, including presentations by visiting scholars and creative writers as well as career events. Sigma Tau Delta, the English honor society, gives students opportunities to present and publish their work and to serve the community through book drives, writing contests and more. The English Ambassadors promote the department at majors fairs, mentor new students and serve as student liaisons to the department. Students in the English Department Honors Program participate in faculty-student collaborative research or academic leadership to graduate with departmental honors.
Many English majors collaborate with professors on research projects, from supporting low-income residents in their health and wellness needs to researching an American environmentalist poet, and everything in between.
English majors should consult with their faculty advisers as early as possible to build an effective plan for their specific program (e.g. teaching, critical studies, linguistics or writing).
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