Why Major in English?
Prof. Tru Leverette
Assistant Professor of English
The word education derives from Latin: ex, “from within,” and duco, “to guide.” Contrary to many contemporary practices, education is meant to set the stage for a person’s knowledge to grow and expand from within rather than having that knowledge delivered from without. In other words, true education enables one to think rather than tells one what to think; it is not a system wherein people are told what matters but one in which they can come to learn for themselves what is relevant and important. Although this view of education is not a widely followed concept in our modern system, it is still an integral part of studying English in college.
As a more subjective subject than chemistry or math, English is a subject that will allow you to expand your own critical thinking, giving you tools that benefit every area of life. Learning how to think, rather than what to think, frees up your potential to develop individually, to identify your own goals, and to chart a path toward the achievement of those goals. Critical thinking skills are also integral to a wide variety of professional careers, and an English major is often preferred for future graduate study in areas such as law.
Practically speaking, the thinking, close reading, and writing skills that one learns by majoring in English are foundational for the study of law, business, and even medicine. An undergraduate major in English can give you essential tools for achievement in whatever field you later choose to pursue; it is a solid foundation that translates into future success.