The English major at Stonehill provides ideal preparation for graduate and professional studies in a number of fields. Indeed, Stonehill English majors have gone on to graduate study at a number of top-tier national and international institutions to pursue advanced degrees ranging from the Ph.D. to the JD. Our program prepares students for success in college, in the humanities workforce and in the world.
During my time at Stonehill, I found that interning at nonprofit organizations was an effective way of sampling a variety of professional fields. I became interested in the field of development during my first internship at the ALS Association. I later interned at the Children’s Museum in Easton, learning to write proposals to foundations. During this time, I also participated in the DFLI program at Stonehill’s Center for Nonprofit Management, learning about fundraising from Stonehill’s Advancement office. This experience increased my interest in the area of higher education within the nonprofit world. After graduating from Stonehill, I accepted a position in the fundraising office at Harvard Medical School as a Gift Processor. In this role, I worked through the logistics of donations and managed acknowledgement letters to donors. I have since begun a new position in the same office on the Donor Relations team, in which I write detailed stewardship reports to major donors updating them on the impact their gifts are having at Harvard Medical School.
English majors are always told that the ability to communicate effectively is an invaluable skill learned by studying and writing about literature, and I am glad to tell you that it is true. When you enter the professional world, you will be able to write at an elevated level that will not go unnoticed by your colleagues and supervisors. The ability to analyze and parse out the meaning of complicated texts is also a professional strength; a solid knowledge of how to find the main points and summarize a piece of writing translates well to any professional field. Because English majors are valued in a variety of professional settings, you will be qualified to work in a multitude of fields.
I got a job as a Research and Instruction Librarian at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where I spent a great deal of time teaching in the classroom and providing research consultations for all kinds of WPI researchers. I am currently a librarian at the Wellesley Free Library. I found English to be a truly multidisciplinary major. Combining my passions for literature and education, I found the role of a librarian to be a perfect fit. I consistently use the skills I developed as an English major in my career and I know that having a B.A. in English has allowed me to be successful.
After graduating from Stonehill in May 2004, I volunteered at orphanages and elderly homes in Yaroslavl, Russia for several months before attending law school at New York University School of Law. After graduating from law school in May 2007, I worked as an associate at Ropes & Gray LLP in Boston and San Francisco, and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP in San Francisco, before accepting a position at Lubin Olson in August 2014.
I believe that my experience at Stonehill as an English major played a vital role in my success at law school and subsequently as a lawyer. Specifically, English classes at Stonehill taught me how to read critically and write persuasively. Since most exams in law school are essay format, I felt that I had an advantage over fellow students because of the writing skills I developed at Stonehill. The key to succeeding in law school is the ability to organize your thoughts in an essay and clearly articulate your arguments. Stonehill definitely prepared me for this. Similarly, I have found that the writing and reading skills that I learned at Stonehill continue to play an important role in my career as a lawyer. It is very important when writing a legal brief that you articulate your arguments clearly, concisely, and persuasively. Thanks to the essays that I wrote at Stonehill, I have been able to do this thus far and I am confident that I will be able to continue to do so throughout my career.
I graduated from Stonehill in 2011 and worked for just under one year in the marketing department at a local educational nonprofit. In May of 2012 I began my career at the Museum of Science as the Marketing Coordinator. After one year in the Marketing Coordinator position, I transitioned to the role of Marketing Analyst. I am now responsible for tracking the effectiveness of the Museum’s marketing campaigns. I report to Museum management, quantifying and analyzing consumer response to all marketing initiatives, from paid advertising to social media outreach.
My time with the English department at Stonehill taught me how to approach texts, films, art, and so much more, critically and with the intention of discerning deeper meaning than what lives on the surface. Much of my job now involves looking at sets of data and communicating what they mean and why they are important in a clear, concise manner. I am always grateful for my experiences in the English department that taught me how to write and speak with purpose.
After graduating, I participated in Stonehill’s Service Corps, through which I spent a year volunteering at a school in northeastern India. I taught English language and helped transform a mountainous pile of donated books into a functioning school library. After India, I moved to New York City, where I interned at the Rubin Museum of Art, assisting with the Brainwave lecture series, which brings artists and neuroscientists together in on-stage conversations to discuss the workings of the mind. I then worked for a literacy non-profit called Behind the Book, whose mission is to get students in New York City’s under-served public schools excited about reading and writing. To these ends, I oversaw the publication of student-written and illustrated books, later presented to their proud authors at classroom book release parties.
Currently, I am the Managing Editor at Glitterati Incorporated, an independent publisher of high-end illustrated books—fine art, photography, pop culture, travel, etc. I oversee production, working with authors (many of whom are established artists and photographers), designers, and copy editors to see that the various parts of the book come together on time. Looking back, I can easily retrace my steps to an idyllic campus in Easton, MA, to professors who made themselves available and took genuine interest in my ideas, to blissfully quiet hours on the third floor of MacPhaidin Library, to classroom discussions that cracked the world wide open, making it sparkle with possibility.
As a technical writer, I worked for a software start-up in Silicon Valley, drafting end-user application guides and help center materials. As a first-year Teach for America corps member, I have had the opportunity to nurture, develop, and inspire young minds in my home state, Hawai‘i.
The English department at Stonehill provided me with the tools to evaluate my work, develop a plan of attack, and implement that plan with measurable results, whether that be more users accessing help center materials or improved student proficiency in Common Core standards. While it may seem that Milton and Barthes are far removed from both professions, the critical analysis of these texts and the writing skills I learned at Stonehill provided me with the ability to meet each challenge with the necessary tools.
Moving from Hawai‘i to Easton, MA was quite an eye-opening experience. The people, culture, even the pace of work were different than my home. However, I found the College to be a nurturing environment that didn’t push back against my interests or concerns but, rather, encouraged them. Inspired by the professors of the English department, I am now planning to pursue an MA in English with the hopes of becoming a university lecturer in Hawai‘i’s college outreach programs.
During my semester in New York City, not only did I learn what a development department did, I also figured out what I wanted to do after graduation, and most importantly, I found a goal and the courage to blaze a path to pursue it.
As I gained fundraising experience, composing written correspondence with donors and interacting with my coworkers in a wide range of situations and environments, both in person and electronically, I learned the importance of the art of communication, and discovered a fascination with the power of language.
In sum, I cultivated a passion that propelled me through my final year at Stonehill with a renewed enthusiasm for English and communication: although the study of literature did not directly relate to my new post-graduation objectives, I was eager to analyze the linguistic styles of other writers, and to develop my own writing skills and command of the English language.