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Why WKU English?

The most wonderful feature of the WKU Department of English is undoubtedly the people—our faculty and staff really care about students and their work.  They work hard to challenge students to help them do their very best work, and many of them develop relationships with students that last a lifetime. 

Our program is also a great value, affordable for in-state and out-of-state students. WKU has a Tuition Incentive Program for students from a number of regions and offers many general scholarships for students; the English Department offers its own scholarships too. 

Dr. Ted Hovet with Graduate Derick Strode

Our students are also central to what makes our department great at the academic and interpersonal level. We have one of the highest concentrations of honors students at WKU and, certainly, within our college. Our undergraduates publish and present their work regularly at conferences, and we have a strong record of students receiving national prizes, such as the Fulbright

Along with our great people, we offer a wide range of programs including literature from medieval to modern; fiction, poetry, script, and memoir writing; secondary English teaching and teaching English as a second language; technical,  business, and professional writing; and film studies and production. Our department houses WKU’s outstanding Gender and Women’s Studies Program, and you can learn a lot about gender dynamics, globally and historically, with an emphasis on issues central to women's lives. In the English program, you have many choices in the courses you can take. In fact, we recently finished revising our new curriculum so that students will have a strong set of primary courses in the major, but more freedom to take English courses that interest them. 

We also have many co-curricular opportunities that allow you to develop friendships with people who share your interests, supplementing your learning and allowing you to gain experience before graduation. A few options include: 

The WKU English Club is a student run organization open to new members and new ideas. You don't even have to be an English major to join, only share our passion for literature, writing, and the humanities.
WKU's chapter of Sigma Tau Delta: The International English Honor Society, Pi Iota, has been an active part of our Department of English for nearly half a century. Its purpose is to recognize high student achievement in the study of English language and literature.

The WKU Professional Writing Club is a great place to learn more about possible careers, as well as how to better prepare for and handle job-searching. Connect with others who share your goals and learn more about future and immediate opportunities in your field!

Please contact Dr. Jones with any questions.

WKU Film Club is an organization for students with a passion, appreciation, or interest in film.

For more information, contact Dr. Ted Hovet, sponsor.

Present on a project that you have been exploring or a topic you love at the annual Undergraduate Literature, Language, and Culture Conference.

Express your creative talents and watch them become concrete by submitting work to Zephyrus  (our undergraduate literary magazine), Goldenrod, or the Mary Ellen and Jim Wayne Miller Celebration of Writing. Work with a faculty member to shape your work for publication in The Ashen Egg (our undergraduate journal of English scholarship)


Along with these activities, you also have many opportunities to study away. The department has offered courses in Greece, Switzerland, Cuba, and more! Additionally, WKU is repeatedly a top Fulbright grant-producing institution, and English majors make up a good portion of these student winners.  A number of faculty have also created travel opportunities to Oxford, Mississippi, Chicago, Memphis, and Louisville as part of regular classes.

Evidence shows that [English majors] tend to advance farther and be more sought out by CEOs for high-level jobs than non-liberal arts graduates. Employers can train new hires in specialized skills on the job. But they can't train workers to have critical-thinking skills, problem-solving skills, and the capacity for lifelong learning that today's organizations require.

~ Katherine Hanson, Chief Writer for Quintessential Resumes and Cover Letters

Our department has also created an amazing internship program that is ideal for career-minded students. Not all English departments offer such practical, on-the-job learning opportunities, but we have an intensive program that places students as web designers, social media consultants, teaching assistants, educational content creators, and music publicists to name a few.

For a glimpse of what others have done within some of our undergraduate concentrations, see the English alumni profiles below:

Shane Wood - Literature

Eileen Ryan - English for Secondary Teaching

Haley Cade - Creative Writing

Mary Boothe - Professional Writing




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 Last Modified 8/25/21