The skills you learn studying literature will help you succeed in whatever field you pursue. In short, English opens doors for you.


Our program prepares students with practical skills that translate into real-world strengths. We will prepare you to take the lead as a writer or communicator in any career path you may choose.

The practice of ‘close reading’ was the biggest takeaway from my time as a student in the department. It’s the essential skill and, as we all know, it’s a practice that one applies to the non-literary life as a citizen, employee, consumer, voter, etc.

Bill Conlogue, Class of 1986
Professor of English, Marywood University

Why English is in Demand:

  • Studying the humanities helps us “enjoy life more and endure it better. The reason we need the humanities is because we’re human. That’s enough.” (“Why Teach English?")
  • Almost every career path demands the skills in writing, reading, thinking, analysis and communication that English provides.
  • English majors have the strong communications skills required to be strong leaders.
  • English majors embrace their creativity and imagination and apply these skills to problem solving, team building and leadership.
  • English majors are curious. They look for causes, seek meaning, find connections, are never satisfied with simplistic answers, and pursue the quest for truth again and again. (Read this article)
  • English majors care about the world in their books and the world beyond those books. 
  • English majors are dreamers and doers.

Is it for me?

  • Do you get caught up in stories, movies or poetry?
  • Do you enjoy a good argument?
  • Are you interested in understanding other people’s experiences?
  • Do you care about saying things in the clearest and most concise way?

Five Reasons to Choose Scranton for English

Career outcomes.   English majors do very well professionally. Their salaries in the years after graduation rank in the middle of the average by major, and they rise to the upper middle in later years. English majors also report higher future job satisfaction and engagement than most other majors.
Dedicated faculty and staff.   Our faculty love good conversations. We stay after class and past our office hours because we enjoy seeing how stories that are familiar to us seem new to you. We care about your writing because the better you express yourself, the more interesting our teaching becomes.
Strong foundations.   You'll learn to read more skeptically, to write more urgently, to speak more thoughtfully, to think more logically and to express yourself more creatively.
Jesuit education.   The Ignatian tradition begins with the promise that, as you learn to discern your inner strengths and inclinations, you learn how best to use your gifts on behalf of the world. When you make yourself a better reader and a better writer, you open yourself to that transformational experience.
Active learning.   Our professors bring a variety of approaches to the classroom. Some write stimulating lectures, some de-center the classroom and expect conversation, and others experiment with new media. In every case, expect each day to engage you in a specific question that’s part of a semester-long inquiry.
  • Preparing You For Personal & Professional Successplus or minus

    You'll learn how to:

    • Read thoroughly and analytically
    • Craft strategic arguments
    • Strengthen your presentation skills
    • Develop a unique and engaging writer’s voice
    • Take the lead in a group discussion
    • Apply creative thinking to real solutions

    English majors go places. Typically, they are in the middle of the salary range within one year after they graduate. Five years out, they are the most engaged and satisfied employees at whatever job they choose to do.

    Rebecca Beal, Ph.D.

  • What You'll Learnplus or minus


    Each class will expose you to new authors and new stories. Each will hold you to the same rigor in developing a thesis and supporting it with clear evidence and sustained argument. 

    Click here to see the curriculum.


    English majors have received excellent internships, both locally and regionally at
    organizations such as:

    • MTV Networks
    • Scranton Times-Tribune
    • NEPA & McGraw PC
    • Citadel Broadcasting
    • American Red Cross
    • Highlights Publishing
  • Pursue Your Passion and Make a Differenceplus or minus

    Share your work on campus through publication in our departmental literary magazine, Esprit

    Take part in one of our theatrical productions

    Pursue an internship in professional writing, editorial work or reporting

    Get involved in our English Honor Society, Sigma Tau Delta, where over the last decade:

    • Eleven of our students have won recognition from the national organization
    • 28 students have been selected to present at the convention
    • One student won the convention award for best paper in British Literature

    The honor society also brings to campus creative minds such as poets Carolyn Forche and Ekere Tallie, and playwright Sarah Ruhl.


Where will English take me?

Anywhere you want to go. Really. The beauty of our program lies in its versatility. As an English major, you’ll develop the analytical and expressive tools you need to thrive in any occupation you pursue.

We turn out doctors, lawyers, CEOs, salespeople, performers, scientists and consultants as well as teachers and writers.

Graduate Schools

Our students have gone on to pursue MBAs, doctorates and law degrees. For example, Kaitlyn Roholt, Class of 2011, was accepted at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Alumnus Andy Clarke started a literary journal for medical students at Jefferson.

The strong foundations you’ll build in our program are versatile and flexible, allowing you to pursue an array of post-graduation opportunities.

Other students have gone on to pursue graduate studies at leading universities, including:

  • Drexel University
  • Villanova University
  • Fu Jen Catholic University
  • Syracuse University
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Boston University

Employment Opportunities:

Graduates apply strong skills in writing, analytical thinking and leadership to a variety of career settings. Many of our alumni choose to work in academia. For example, William Conlogue, Class of 1986, is now a professor at Marywood University here in Scranton. Other alumni have gone on to teaching positions in higher education as assistant professor at the University of Oregon and assistant professor at the University of British Columbia, Canada.

Other graduates find their niche in the corporate sector. Amanda Bush, Class of 2013, works as a Junior Publicist at Phil & Co. in New York City. Brendan Curry, Class of 2001, works as senior editor at W.W. Norton.

From library science to public relations, you’ll be prepared for any career you choose with an English degree from The University of Scranton.

How Scranton Gives You a Competitive Edge

Competitive Edge

In order to realize your full potential, you need to develop a strong sense of self and sensitivity to the world around you. At Scranton, you’ll benefit from our Jesuit ideals of reflection and self-awareness so that you can, in the words of St. Ignatius, “Go and set the world on fire.”

Take the Next Step

Get the Facts

View PDF with Program Overview
& Curriculum

For More Information

Office of Admissions
The Estate
Scranton, PA 18510
1-888-SCRANTON or (570) 941-7540

Department of English & Theater
Dr. Susan C. Mendez
Chair, Department of English & Theatre
(570) 941-6331