Studying English Literature within a liberal arts curriculum allows students to navigate the present-day world with an eye toward the future by building on the richness of what has been written in the past and is still being created. Studies in Literature "open the doors of imagination and understanding” that allow students to see across cultures to investigate how others think and feel regarding the timeless question of what it means to be “truly human.” In a complex world of ever evolving developments in media and technology, the English curriculum gives students the critical tools to distinguish between the true and the false, the relevant and the irrelevant. It also offers valuable skills to help them express their ideas with clarity, insight, and integrity that will prepare them for fulfilling career possibilities and an inspired, creative existence long after graduation.
Why Study English Literature at CHC?
At Chestnut Hill College, a liberal arts institution, we understand and appreciate the power of an English literature degree. Our students are educated in a cross-cultural curriculum that provides students the chance to hone their critical and creative thinking, writing, and research skills.
Through small and interactive classes, student involvement is emphasized and encouraged in classroom discussion, analysis, and reflection. Students get to know their classmates and their instructors in ways that build lasting relationship of support and mentoring.
Professors who bring rich intellectual and professional backgrounds provide guidance and support to students, thus fostering the community of collaborative exploration that is found within the program. A wide range of courses across British, American, and culturally and socially diverse writers and topics gives students every opportunity to follow their interests and acquire a well-rounded background in literature and writing-related fields. English literature majors at CHC graduate with the foundational knowledge in diverse literary genres that prepare them to enter graduate study or the workplace in fields like business, the arts, law, or communication.
There are several on-campus clubs and organizations that are especially of interest to Literature majors. These include:
- The Grackle, A Literary Magazine - The Grackle is the on-campus magazine which features student work in a variety of fields. Students are encouraged to submit original works of poetry, short stories, photographs, comic strips or other artistic pieces. The magazine comes out once a year with the planning and submission stages occurring in the fall and the production and distribution happening in the spring. All students are welcome to assist with any of the stages.
- The Griffin, Student Newspaper - The Griffin is the student-run newspaper which is distributed both on and off campus once a month. Students are invited to become writers, featured writers and editors for the paper, which is currently published in print and online. For more information and to read past issues, please visit the Griffin website.
Additionally, students who qualify with a major GPA of 3.0, who rank in the top 35 percent of their graduating class and who have completed three semesters of coursework and two courses in English above ENGU 101, may be asked to join Sigma Tau Delta (STD), the International English Honor Society.
Departmental Honors are offered within this major. Outstanding students with a high scholastic standing may be invited in their sophomore year to stand for honors in their junior and senior years. The program provides the opportunity for independent study and research, culminating in an honors thesis submitted in the spring of senior year. All students who successfully complete this program will be recognized with honors as well as have the title of their thesis printed on their academic transcripts.
Secondary Education Certification:
The Secondary Education Certification Program in English is available to English Majors seeking Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) Certification.
The Program integrates educational theory and practice with field experiences that include practicum and student teaching, as well as in-class opportunities to develop teaching competence through innovative and effective approaches to the educational process focusing on students at the Secondary Level.
This program offers:
- Major: English Literature
- Major: English Literature with Secondary Ed. Co-Major
- Minor: English Literature
- Minor: Creative Writing
Graduates with a degree in English Literature are highly valued in many fields for their unique abilities to write, analyze, and synthesize information, skills desperately needed in today’s world. From business to medical writing, from law firms to jobs in government, our alums bring their analysis, communication, and writing skills to areas outside of their designated field of study. English majors are also prepared for graduate study in literature, law, education, communications, journalism, and M.F.A. programs.
For those interested in staying in an English-related career, popular choices for students include:
- Business and Technical Writing
- Public Relations
- Editing and Publishing
- Public Relations
- Secondary Education
- Social Media Coordination
- Medical Fields
- Human Resources
- Fundraising and Grant Writing
Majors in English Literature are encouraged to take at least one internship and our students have interned at top firms including:
- TV: 6ABC-WPVI, Comcast SportsNet (CSN Philly), ESPN Films, Telemundo, WHYY
- Publications: Chesapeake Life Magazine, The Hemingway Review, Magnet Magazine, The Philadelphia Business Journal, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Magazine
- Radio: WHYY, WMMR-FM, WPVI-TV, WXTV-FM
- PR: Harmelin Media
Additional Internships at The Hemingway Review:
The Hemingway Review is a scholarly journal published twice a year by the Ernest Hemingway Foundation and Society edited by Suzanne del Gizzo (Chestnut Hill College). The journal specializes in researched scholarship on the life and work of Ernest Hemingway. There are two internships available each year: Editorial Assistant and Social Media Assistant.
The editorial assistant will help the editor as she prepares the journal for publication. The journal is published in April and October each year. The student will learn about the publication process from tracking article submissions to working with the printer of the journal. The student will also be given opportunities to learn a great deal about grammar, punctuation, and effective academic writing. The editorial assistant receives recognition at the masthead of the journal.
The social media assistant will help The Hemingway Review and Hemingway Society website editor as she prepares the Review’s blog and special news items for publication on the website. Blog and news posts are made regularly, and the intern will be expected to edit and post contributions from other writers as well as locate items and write up posts his or herself. The student will also be given opportunities to learn about the Society’s site, how to write summaries of news stories and blog posts. The intern will also learn a great deal grammar, punctuation, and effective social media writing.