I became an English major because I enjoy reading literature, and I enjoy writing about it (which seemed a perfect combination to me). But, then, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I really wasn't drawn to becoming a teacher.
So, from personal experience, I think an English major can pursue any career path he/she wants to pursue.
- An English major makes an eloquent lawyer (in fact, I once wanted to be a lawyer, and I was advised to earn a BA in English and then pursue pre-law).
- An English major can be an eloquent writer (journalist, novelist, essayist, etc.). Who better to explore the fascinating ins and outs of language than someone who has studied the greatest world classics?
- An English major can go into marketing... I know, marketing can seem to be an ugly word to many. But, when you have the ability to write (and write well), you can write about products. You can compel consumers to buy the product (and the field of marketing can offer a successful career.
- An English major can become a Publicist. Again, it’s a field where the ability to write well can lead to a successful and fulfilling degree.
- An English major can become a Researcher. Just think about how much research you've completed as you pursued your degree!
- An English major can become a Copywriter. Many companies (in almost every industry) need a copywriter at some point. Copywriters are often enlisted to create newsletters, direct mail letters, and so many other pieces. Again, the ability to write well can be advantageous in this field.
- An English major can become an Editor (or Editorial Assistant). What a way to make a living: to work with words?
- An English major can become a Fundraiser. This occupation is also much more successful with the eloquent use of language.
I have to say though: I've often felt the same way. I've had to defend my choice of the English major. Some people seem to think that a degree in Business is a much more logical choice. (Or, they think that my only career path as an English major is that of a Teacher.)
But, as an English major, I've always felt privileged. I had the opportunity to read all those books, to learn about the lives of the literary greats (and to learn so much more about language and literature). Wherever my occupations have taken me, I've cherished that opportunity to simply soak up the atmosphere of the English majors (with fellow literature lovers around me every day).
I hope your experience in achieving your English degree will leave you with that sense of having accomplished something that will stay with you for the rest of your life--no matter what your career path turns out to be.