Messiah English majors are quite active on campus and off: they write for--and edit--The Peregrine Review and The Swinging Bridge; they work at Murray Library or the campus Writing Center, and they often work in service-projects. Many senior English majors have semester-long internships at local publishers, magazines, and businesses.
Messiah's study abroad options are plentiful, although most English majors choose one of our England programs.
Double Major / Double Concentration
Did you know the English major only consists of 36 credits? This is equivalent to 12 classes, making English one of the most flexible majors to pair with another area of study. We have students in every school at Messiah College, from a Dance Major in the School of the Arts to a Mathematics Major in the School of Science, Engineering and Health. Or, if you feel right at home in the English Major, choose to double concentrate in both Literature and Writing.
School of the Arts
Sarah Kistler '17: Dance & English Writing
"Dance has been a great value to English. It has helped me in the creative process. I have learned to express myself in both written words and movement. When I don't have words, I dance. When I can't find movement, I write."
School of Business, Education & Social Sciences
Molly Martin '19: Marketing & English Literature
"My other major has given me a way to make English more applicable to my life, [as] the business world is desperately searching for good writers. I have learned that English majors are very good at looking at the world through multiple perspectives, which is a skill marketers also develop. Gathering information about individuals in order to market to them is similar to analyzing the different characters and authors we read about."
School of Humanities
Tara Kleinmanns '18: Communication & English Writing
"Communication has only enhanced my study of English by emphasizing the importance of language in personal and professional settings. It so fluidly combines written and spoken word and the combination of the two majors provides a well-rounded education catering to a broad scope of interests."
School of Science, Engineering & Health
Emily Smetak '17: Mathematics & English
"In mathematics, all your courses require that you think logically, prove your claims, and also find different approaches to argue in favor for a given mathematical statement. These are the very skills required for English majors. I have found that through the math program, I have been better able to write coherent and logical essays, validate my points, as well as develop the imaginative capacities necessary to write more creative pieces."
Joel Johnson '17: Sustainability Studies & English
"I would highly encourage pairing another subject with English. You hear people in the department say it all the time, but English really is applicable to everything. It's not just about literature and writing, it's about learning to think clearly and read critically. Similarly, I have found sustainability and agriculture expand my perspective and voice as a writer in exciting ways."
The Peregrine Review
The Peregrine Review is a literary magazine composed of poetry, prose and artwork. Pieces included are crafted by Messiah students, faculty and staff and are edited by students. Those who wish to submit to The Peregrine Review can do so by emailing email@example.com.
The Swinging Bridge is the student-run campus newspaper. Develop your writing and editing skills by working as a reporter, feature writer, section editor, or senior editor.
Poets and Writers
The English Department sponsors the Poets & Writers Series, a series devoted to bringing important and nationally recognized authors to campus for readings, class visits, and workshops. Visiting writers have included such luminaries as Amy Tan, Robert Pinsky, Li-Young Lee, Jennifer Egan, and many others.
The Paul W. Nisly Endowment, a tribute to the legacy of the English Department's long-time member and chair, was created to promote further understanding of the writing and study of literature as a form of Christian vocation. It especially promotes activities that encourage inquiry into how this vocation is related to the task of peacemaking, the quest for social justice, and the work of reconciliation of human beings to one another and to God.
Enrich your undergraduate education with an experience abroad that you won’t want to miss! English majors are very competitive in being accepted to programs, both international and domestic. Many English majors choose to study at one of four programs in the United Kingdom. But don’t just limit yourself to England—Messiah has programs everywhere from Uganda to Costa Rica. Any experience that transcends culture is one that will develop your worldview and give you material for future writing and speaking experiences. Furthermore, financing your trip is easy, as semesters abroad are covered under your current financial aid. To find out more, visit the Intercultural Office's page on off-campus programs.
The Writing Center
Did you know you can get paid to peer review? Students who work at The Writing Center have the opportunity to sharpen other students’ writing skills while simultaneously honing their own. Furthermore, it is a great way for you to build your résumé in a way that directly applies to the English major. While you may not be pursuing a teaching certificate, peer review is still a valuable way to learn how to give constructive criticism and sharpen your written and oral communication skills. These are not only qualities that employers seek when hiring, but they will also serve you well as you navigate the world as a Christian intellectual.