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Page Index:English

Academic Information: -  top

What is English?  top

English is derived from England, one would think. But in fact the language name is found long before the country name. The latter first appears as Englaland around the year 1000 and means "the land of the Engle," that is, the Angles. The Angles, Saxons, and Jutes were the three Germanic tribes that emigrated from what is now Denmark and northern Germany and settled in England around the fourth century ad. Early on, the Angles enjoyed a rise to power that must have made them seem more important than the other two tribes, for all three tribes are indiscriminately referred to in early documents as Angles. The speech of the three tribes was conflated in the same way: they all spoke what would have been called *Anglisc, or "Anglish," as it were. By the earliest recorded Old English, this had changed to Englisc.

Career Information  -  top

Possible Job Titles  -  top

  • Administrative Officer
  • Advertising Occupations
  • Archivist
  • Book Editor
  • Book Reviewer
  • Bookstore Owner
  • Community Relations Worker
  • Computer Systems Analyst
  • Congressional Aide
  • Copy Editor
  • Copywriter
  • Critic
  • Editor
  • Editorial Assistant
  • Film Editor
  • Foreign Services Information Officer
  • Free-Lance Writer
  • Information Specialist
  • Interpreter
  • Job Analyst
  • Journalist
  • Lawyer
  • Writing Center Assistant
  • Legislative Assistant
  • Literary Agent
  • Management Occupations
  • Medical Secretary
  • Network Story Editor
  • Newspaper Editor
  • Personnel Director
  • Personnel Officer
  • Proofreader
  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Publishing Occupations
  • Radio/TV Coordinator
  • Reporter
  • Research Assistant
  • Researcher
  • Speech Writer
  • Teacher
  • Technical Writer
  • Translator
  • Underwriter
  • Visual Arts Specialist
  • Writer

Typical Places of Employment  -  top

  • Advertising departments &firms
  • Libraries
  • Business corporations
  • Literary periodicals
  • Colleges & schools
  • Magazines and newspapers
  • Department stores
  • Political action groups
  • Educational institutions
  • Public relations firms
  • Film companies
  • Publishing companies
  • Research & Development firms
  • Radio/TV stations
  • Education Department
  • Travel agencies
  • Government Printing Office
  • Library of Congress

Required Skills and Abilities -  top

  • Composing, writing
  • Enlightening, guiding
  • Working independently
  • Helping
  • Acting, performing
  • Selecting and training
  • Decorating, designing
  • Informing, organizing
  • Teaching, explaining
  • Solving problems
  • Leading discussions
  • Creative thinking

Alumni Resources  - top

(Listed below are examples of SU Alumni and their Jobs in this major-For more alumni resources, go to Mentor Network)

-Elizabeth Coccia- Metuchen NJ 08840- University of Medicine and Health Sciences -Associate Director of Enrollment Management  
-Simon Drew- St. Louis MO 63109- Kirkwood School District -English teacher/professor
-Byron Hughes- Blacksburg VA 24062- Virginia Tech -Director of Fraternity and Sorority Life
-Dianna Leonard- Silver Spring MD 20905- University of Maryland University- College Graduate Advisor
-David Lybarger -Bloxom VA 23308 -Lockheed Martin  -Project Management and Planning Operations Representative, Sr.
-Erin Marks -Davis WV 26260- Tucker County Board of Education- 10th Grade ELA teacher
-Terri Morris -Pittsville MD - Enterprise Holdings, Inc. -Talent Acquisition Manager  

Related Links: Further Explore this Career Field -  top

Professional Associations:

Magazine Publishers of America

National Newspaper Publishing Association

Small Publishers, Artists and Writers Network

Small Publishers Association of North America

Association of American Publishers

Association of Directory of Publishers

Investigative Reporters & Editors

Other Career-Related Links:

What can you do with an English Degree-from CNN

Careers in Journalism
Careers in Editing
Careers in Technical Writing
Careers in English as a Second Language (ESL)
Careers in Writing and other English Pursuits
Graduate School In English-Helpful Sites

Interesting facts: Famous English Majors

Compiled by Mississippi State University English Department

As might be expected, a large number of writers hold degrees in English. The list includes:

Douglas Adams: SciFi writer; wrote "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" series; Dirk Gently series

Gwendolyn Brooks: poems include "We Real Cool"

Tom Clancy: suspense writer; "Clear and Present Danger "

Allen Ginsberg: Beat Generation poet; poems include "Howl "

Joseph Heller: author of "Catch-22"

David Henry Hwang: author of "Madame Butterfly"

Stephen King: extraordinarily successful and prolific author of horror fiction; writings range from "Carrie" through "The Green Mile" and "The Stand" to the short story on which the movie "Stand by Me" is based

Bobbie Ann Mason: short story writer; collections include Shiloh

Arthur Miller: playwright most noted for "Death of a Salesman" and "The Crucible"

Toni Morrison: author of "Beloved"

Joyce Carol Oates: prolific author

Philip Roth: esteemed Jewish author

Amy Tan: author of "The Joy Luck Club"

John Updike: most noted for the "Rabbit" books, from "Run, Rabbit, Run" to "Rabbit at Rest"

Then there are those English majors who have made non-traditional use of their degrees, including:

Russell Baker--journalist

Dave Barry--humorist writer, actor

Linda Bloodworth-Thomason--television writer/producer (Designing Women, Evening Shade)

Carol Browner--former Head of the Environmental Protection Agency

Chevy Chase--comedian, actor, writer

Mario Cuomo--former Governor of New York

John Cuzack -- actor

David Duchovny -- actor

Michael Eisner--Walt Disney CEO (former)

Jodie Foster--actor, filmmaker

Kathryn Fuller--World Wildlife Fund CEO

Cathy Guisewite--cartoonist (Cathy)

Tommy Lee Jones -- actor

Kris Kristofferson -- songwriter, actor

Paul Newman--actor, food entrepreneur

Joe Paterno--football coach (Penn State University)

Sally Ride--astronaut

Joan Rivers--comedienne

Diane Sawyer--broadcast journalist

Herb Scannell -- President, Nickolodeon Networks, MTV Networks Group President

Paul Simon--songwriter, singer

Steven Spielberg--filmmaker

Marty Schottenheimer--Coach of San Diego Chargers

Christopher Reeve--late actor, activist for the disabled

Clarence Thomas--U.S. Supreme Court Justice

Emma Thompson -- actor

Grant Tinker--TV Executive and Producer

Harold Varmus--Nobel laureate in medicine, former Director of National Institutes of Health

Barbara Walters--broadcast journalist

Sigourney Weaver--actress

Pete Wilson--former Governor of California

Bob Woodward--journalist, wrote All the President's Men

Renee Zellweger -- actress

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