Something to consider before becoming an English Major

Well, it has officially been two months since I graduated. Things feel great. Things feel nice. Things feel odd. Things feel uneasy, actually. It feels wonderful knowing the start of classes in late August are no longer hanging above me. But… all this time has me questioning if the last four years taught me anything.

I say that because the job search for this girl has commenced. I have been all over Indeed.com and Monster.com and even my school network looking for jobs. But, what am I even looking for? What do I have any skills in? Lets just say, I have no idea.

This might not be the instance for every English Major, but to me, I am disappointed in what I experienced. Since I was between two schools during my college years, I feel like I have taste tested the curriculum enough to comment on this. I might also have a very unique experience in this because I am not just an English Major, but an English Major with a concentration in Creative Writing. When I decided to go to College there was only one path I wanted to take, and that was either the worst or best decision.

Between both schools I attended for this major, it seems like they had the same set up. There were core classes every English Major had to take, then there was the creative writing classes. Obviously, the creative writing classes I took, I loved. I loved writing in different voices and just knowing that someone had to read what I was writing was extremely exciting. Now, to the core classes. Most of them consisted of reading texts from the beginning of time to the current times. Then, get this, we had to analyze them! Wow, I wonder what I’m going to do with that! Absolutely nothing. Now, this aspect might appeal to the future teachers, but not me. I wish that our core classes focused on different forms of writing like grant writing. Or perhaps on different platforms. Or maybe what to do with writing.

This is such a small plea for reform, but I truly hope that this changes for the better. I don’t care about Alexander Pope the english poet. I don’t care about Huck Finn. I do not see how learning about these texts will help English Majors in their future. Colleges need to start looking forward on this matter.

Since I took up a concentration in Creative Writing, most of my classes were exactly what I wanted–a place to share my words with others. But, that does not teach me skills on how and where to share my work. Or how to get an office job while writing the next best novel. It does not get me a job, but just a part-time job while living at home.

Look, I love writing. I love creating places inside my head. But, until someone will care about my writing outside of a classroom, I’m stuck. I wish I had the skills that other classes taught me so I could get a job.

So, please, when you’re thinking about college and your major, consider this: No degree will determine if you are a writer or not. If you write, then you are a writer. If you don’t plan on being a teacher or if you hate old texts but love writing, maybe the English Major is not for you. Thankfully I planned my schooling well enough that I am only 20,000 in debt, but that money has gotten me no where. I’m not telling you don’t major in English, I’m just telling you, maybe this will not fulfill what you are looking for. Maybe, it’s worth a minor. But in my case, this degree is just something to hang on the wall.

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