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 students are also central to what makes our department great at the academic and interpersonal level. Our department has 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. 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:
- Develop and explore ways to share your love of English in the English Club
- Explore the benefits of your high level of achievement in The International English Honor Society, Sigma Tau Delta
- Participate in film festivals and discuss your love for film in the Film Club
- Present on a project that you have been exploring or a topic you love at the annual Undergraduate Literature 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)
- And so much more!
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.
Our department has also created an amazing internship program that is ideal for career-minded students. Not all English departments offer such practical, real-world, 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
Chaz Lively - Professional Writing