"So you're majoring in English? What are you going to do with that?"

The answer is: Just about anything you want to do!

You may have been asked these questions a hundred times, but you may have lacked an immediate answer. An English major prepares you for a wide variety of professions, ranging from law to education, from medicine to business, and practically everything in between.

Marquette English graduates have pursued careers in

Within each of these categories, multiple possibilities exist. Consider advertising, for example: if you like to write, you might want to be an advertising copywriter. If you are imaginative and persuasive, you might want to be a part of an advertising design team. If working with people and meeting deadlines are your strengths, perhaps the role of an account manager, the person responsible for planning the overall strategy of an ad campaign, might appeal to you.

In short, the critical thinking, analytical abilities, and writing skills you have acquired in your English classes will serve you well in nearly any job you pursue.

The key, of course, is deciding exactly what that job might be. William Zinsser, a writer, editor, and teacher, claims that what we want to do, we will do well--and that what we don't want to do, we won't do well. The possible careers for English majors are truly limitless, so your first goal should be to put your research and analytical skills to work to determine what it is that you might want to do—and then learn to do it well.

Getting Started

Below are some steps to help you begin this process. We encourage you to use the resources on campus and to consult the many guides available as you enter into this exciting new phase of your life!

(1) Assess your own likes and dislikes, strengths and goals.

(2) Explore possible careers for English majors using:

(3) Make yourself more marketable in your chosen career path:

(4) Enroll in supplementary courses related to your career interests (e.g., business, communications, education, political science, journalism, marketing, economics, digital media)

(5) Minor in a field related to your career.

(6) Contact professional schools (law, education, medicine, journalism, business, etc.) about application procedures and admission requirements.

(7) Tutor in local schools.

Free your imagination, use your research skills, and trust your instincts.
Finally, when you know what it is you want to do, go and do it well!

Campus Resources

For more about Marquette University's resources, see our campus resources


General Career and Self-Assessment Guides

Search for these books from Marquette's Raynor Memorial Library home page:


Career Guides Specifically for English and Liberal Arts Majors


English Department

Marquette University, Marquette Hall 115 (campus map)
P.O. Box 1881
Milwaukee, WI 53201-1881
(414) 288-7179
Visit our contact page for more information.