For those who decided to major in English, there will come a time when you must decide which career path is right for you. As most English majors will experience, the rest of the world is under the impression that majoring in English equals wanting to teach.
While this is a viable career option, it is far from the only one available. There are plenty of career paths for you to choose from as an English student, and having an idea of some career choices can make exploring new options feel more accessible. Here are some modern writing careers that English students should get excited about.
For English students who love television and cinema, becoming a screenwriter can be a fulfilling and exciting career. Screenwriters are professionals who write scripts for television series, movies, and documentaries.
For those who are interested in pursuing screenwriting as a career path, it can be helpful to try it out first and see how you like it. While writing screenplays can be fun, it can also be difficult and it’s not for everyone.
Unlike some other career choices, the path to success for a screenwriter isn’t always clear. When starting, it can be difficult to get someone to give you a chance without any prior credits as a screenwriter. This being the case, it can be discouraging if things don’t work out in a timely fashion.
However, plenty of others have done it before you, so if you’re inclined to pursue a career as a screenwriter, you have nothing to lose by trying.
While becoming a professor may be viewed as a more traditional career for English students, it also aligns with some modern views on work/life balance. Unlike many other professions, professors have the option to take vacations when school is out. This allows for more extended periods of free time with which you’re able to explore hobbies, passions, and other income-generating practices.
Professors can also be scholars of a certain field while teaching as these two professions often go hand in hand. For those who are passionate about literature, becoming both a scholar and a professor can be a fulfilling path to explore for a career. Either way, those who enjoy teaching can find a secure career as a professor.
As you’ve likely noticed, many of the ways we consume media these days are done through digital means. The same can be said for the written word as blogs, news websites, and other forms of writing are largely being consumed online. For those who enjoy writing, pursuing a career as a copywriter can be an enjoyable way to make a living.
Copywriting is a job that is broad and can take many different shapes. As a copywriter, one can write blog articles, email campaigns, ads, website copy, and more. In addition to there being a lot of options in terms of the type of writing one can do, copywriters also have options in terms of the structure of their work.
While there are plenty of opportunities to become a full-time employee at a company as a copywriter, copywriters can also write on a freelance or contract basis. This structure may be more conducive for some people’s schedules who enjoy not having to work a traditional nine-to-five job.
Oftentimes, we take technical writings such as manuals and infographics for granted. In reality, there are people who write technical documents for a living and these professionals are called technical writers. For detail-oriented individuals who find that they enjoy writing highly structured documents, a job as a technical writer can be a worthwhile career choice.
Technical writers can work in a variety of industries ranging from writing technical documents for government agencies to writing instruction manuals for electronic companies. While it can be an exciting field to work in, it can be difficult to break into. Technical writers are depended upon to craft pieces that are accurate and ready to be disseminated.
As such, many are reluctant to take a chance on writers with little to no experience in the field. As such, if you’re intent on pursuing a career as a technical writer then it may be a good idea to look into internships during the tail end of your university program.
While many journalists study journalism in school, those who hold degrees in fields such as English can find exciting careers in the field as well. As an English student, you develop many of the skills that can help one become a great journalist such as a good vocabulary, a developed sense of writing style, and good critical thinking skills. As such, you can thrive as a journalist if you choose to pursue it as a career choice.
For English students toying with the idea of becoming a journalist, it can be helpful to get involved with school newspapers or newsletters to gain experience writing in the capacity of a journalist. In addition, it can be helpful to be proactive about writing and submitting journalistic pieces to as many journals, magazines, or newspapers as you can, as having a strong portfolio will play an important role in finding your first job as a journalist.
Explore Your Potential
As an English major, it can sometimes feel like you have limited options for career choices. In reality, the skills you develop as an English student can be applied to a variety of fields in a variety of ways.
This being the case, you have the opportunity to explore a myriad of different careers to find the one that brings you fulfilment, stimulation, and happiness.