If you’re like me (and most other college students), you’ve struggled with deciding on a major. I came into college nervous about my declared Pre-Optometry/Biology major because I knew it wasn’t quite what I wanted to study. Now, I am a much happier English major. The problem I faced was not knowing where my interests and skill-set best combined. When I changed my major to English, it still didn’t feel right. My analysis skills allowed me to excel in English, but I didn’t want to be a writer, and I didn’t want to be a teacher. I didn’t know any other possible jobs prospects. After discussing my dilemma with English colleagues, though, I finally found my niche in the sub-genre of editing.
Of course, everyone’s process is different, but if you’re an English major, or considering to be one, then allow me to help you figure out your niche in this sometimes fuzzy study. While I am not at all an expert, my hopes are that this post can be a guide of sorts to help you recognize and utilize your English skills and interests.
I’ve listed four areas an English major can pursue. Find the one (or more) that matches up with the skills/interests you like best! Maybe all four sound interesting to you.
1.Writers (Creative Writer, Poet, Blogger, etc.):
Writing, researching, creativity.
Maybe there’s a book you’ve always wanted to read, but hasn’t been written. Maybe you’re really great at writing greeting cards.
2.Teachers (High school, TESL, etc.):
Interacting with others, sharing knowledge, reading, proofreading.
You can be the person that molds a young mind into another English major, or you can help young children in a foreign country conquer linking verbs.
Research, reading, writing, sharing knowledge, interacting with others, presenting/public speaking.
Because who doesn’t want to be able to discuss Dr. Seuss as high literature? There’s a class for almost anything these days.
4. Editors (Blog editors, book editors, copy editors, etc):
Analyzing, reading, organizing, proofreading, researching.
If you’re the friend that always corrects everyone else, maybe this path is for you.
None of these professions are straightforward. If you decide you want to teach, you could become a high school English teacher or teach English as a second language in a foreign country – two very different experiences. So if you find that your interests and skills fit in with one of these, I’ll leave it up to you to do your research. Otherwise, I hope you are one more step closer to a career full of opportunity, hard work, and big dreams!