English at Messiah College
Swamped with images, information, sounds and new technology daily, the English major at Messiah College prepares you to analyze, interpret, understand and change the world around you.
The English degree program takes place on our nationally ranked, central Pennsylvania campus and combines creative writing, literature and critical thinking to form a comprehensive education that leads to a Bachelor of Arts degree in English.
If you are a creative and critical thinker with a broad range of interests, who dreams about writing and positively influencing others through words, then Messiah College’s English major is a good fit for you.
English major distinctives
- Student-teach in local public high schools if you choose a Secondary Teaching Certification path.
- Immerse yourself in a wide range of British, American and World literature.
- Build your portfolio by writing or editing for the campus newspaper or campus literary magazine.
- Spend a semester at Oxford University’s Best Semester program, the Oregon Extension, and the Washington School of Journalism.
- Study for a semester in places such as Russia, Lithuania, Thailand, Belize, Greece and India.
- Prepare and present papers or panel discussions at Messiah’s annual Spring Humanities Symposium.
- Apply for a yearlong senior honors project where you’ll work one-on-one with an English professor in writing your senior thesis.
- Join one of many small informal writing groups on campus.
Career options for English majors
As a graduate of the English program, students are equipped to secure positions in areas such as:
- Business communications
- High school teaching
- Nonprofit advocacy
- College teaching
- Magazine, newspaper or freelance writing
- Library science
For more information on career planning for the English program, visit the Messiah College Career and Professional Development Center.
Internship opportunities for English majors
Messiah’s nationally recognized internship program places students in a variety of English internships. A few examples include:
- Patriot News
- Central PA magazine
- Central Penn Parent
- Stackpole Books
- Classical Academic Press
Your professors in the English degree program, who are also published authors and lecturers, will teach you to hone your writing skills and will provide you with many opportunities to get your writing published outside the classroom. You may even present your work at an international conference or compete for an Oxford fellowship like other Messiah English majors have done. You can also get involved in on-campus writing organizations such as the Peregrine Review or the The Pulse—Messiah’s student-run media group.
Faith and Intellect
One of the most critical needs in our culture is the need for cross-cultural knowledge, awareness and empathy—and our English program will give you just that. Through your ability to empathize with those from other cultures, you will be better able to understand and respond to their particular spiritual, emotional and physical needs. Your training in close reading, research and communication will better enable you to communicate God’s love in an intelligent and useful way.
Interested in teaching English? Take the all the required English degree courses and apply to Messiah’s Teacher Education Program to earn your secondary teaching certificate. In addition to the strong literature and writing curriculum in the English degree program, you’ll also work to the complete the state-required theoretical background and practical experience to become an English teacher in grades 7-12.
Preparation for a meaningful career
Majoring in English—part of the School of the Humanities—is great preparation for your mission in the world. We recently surveyed our English alumni and they agree: Messiah prepared them well for successful, creative careers in teaching, editing, publishing, missions, business, law, ministry and even songwriting.