The Benefits of Becoming an English Major


SUMMARY: JMU English student Evan Moody shares the benefits of becoming an English major.

I have had the opportunity of only meeting a few like-minded, college-bound, high school seniors who share my passion for an area even remotely related to the study of language. However, and unpopular to the opinions of my peers, I believe that the pursuit and ultimate gain of earning a degree in the English language is not only adequate but is more beneficial in modern times than ever.

As an English major, I admit to having been destined for the role since first considering college. Both my grandmother and mother have received degrees within the art and contoured my passions towards the skills of reading and writing. With the addition of self-discovery and combined interests, I have begun my scholarly studies within the English major this year at James Madison University.

In the midst of like-minded individuals, I believe I have settled my longing for peers who own the same literary desire I have possessed for some time. Sparked from the joy of acceptance, I have reflected on my grand decision and combobulated ideas together as to why becoming an English major has been beneficial for me.



I have found comfort in finding scholars who share the same interests as myself. I have always held true to the idea that being understood is necessary for a decent human life and since conforming, I have thrived in many ways.

When I asked a fellow JMU Duke and friend about my English major, he said, “Someone who just likes reading and writing”. Though blunt in his delivery, he is correct. Interests in these fields is what drives the people to come together and assimilate.

To discuss the works of epic poets, philosophize among a group, and to create as humans of this earth, is a breath of fresh empathetic air. Though few in the area of study, I believe there is great beauty within my small circle of English scholars.

Career Engagement

While further interviewing my STEM interested friend on the English major subject, we discussed mainly the opportunities that lie beyond schooling for those who choose the artistic path. “There are little job prospects after graduation,” he said.

However, the English major provides a solid foundation for a student to build upon in any number of graduate study programs. For those who seek the career field of law, the major is exceptionally useful for their further studies.

Furthermore, the artistic denomination can provide necessary skills seeked by employers in mostly every career field. When speaking with my mother, a practitioner of the language, she expressed great admiration for the preparedness of the study. She stated: “English majors have ample opportunities to better their communication skills through reading, writing, research, and public speaking.”

Mental and Spiritual Growth

Despite being referred to as “A waste of time and money”, I believe that the value of an English degree transpires beyond a career placement or set of workplace skills. Once surrounded by the ideologies of great thinkers, those present and past, a student is only bound to develop their stance on themselves and the world surrounding them.

Through the study of literature, a new generation of free thinkers can be released into the world with an impeccable understanding of their societies and an ability to better their own communities.

An English scholar may only study within a university’s walls for a few years. However, the texts and analytical lessons learned from them will carry value throughout their lifetimes.    

About the writer:
My name is Evan Moody and I am a James Madison University English major from Chester, VA. I began my academic career at the University this fall and plan to graduate in the spring of 2025. I enjoy writing, hanging out with friends, and listening to music. Go Dukes!

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Published: Thursday, September 30, 2021

Last Updated: Friday, October 1, 2021

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