Careers and English Alums

The English Department takes the Luther College Mission Statement's emphasis on our graduates' responsible leadership and service in church and society seriously. Through classes, formal advising, and informal interactions, we help students clarify their personal vocation and the "ethical challenges confronting human beings in the world" ("Goals for Student Academic Achievement").

What do English majors do after graduation?

Some decide to share their joy in literature and writing with others. Luther offers a secondary education certification to complement the English major, and our majors have been very successful in finding positions. However, some majors attend graduate school to prepare for college teaching.

Students majoring in English learn to read literary works which develop their ability to think critically and to respond to human experiences both familiar and alien. Through continual practice in writing, they develop aesthetic sensitivity and learn how to use language for creative and analytical purposes, and how to compose metaphors as well as how to research and document ideas. English majors have honed their skills in through careful reading, clear writing, solid research, and thoughtful analysis.

Our alumni do technical writing, news reporting, editing, publishing, and advertising. They have become admissions counselors, public relations consultants, account managers, computer executives, arts organizers, law librarians, and computer programmers. Many use their English major as a foundation for professional schools like law, medicine, urban studies, international affairs, and the ministry.

For statistics on what Luther English graduates have recently been doing after graduation, visit: Recent Grad Statistics.

Each year, the English faculty hosts, "A Life after Luther" event, where English grads return to share their experiences and advice with current majors and minors and reflect on how well their education in literature, rhetoric, and writing prepared them for the work world. At regular points, we survey our graduates to seek their response to their Luther education. And we love to see our graduates—old friends—face to face at the annual Homecoming coffee for them (and sometimes grads from other majors drop in to see favorite former English teachers).

To further keep in touch, each year the department sends out an updated letter to all English grads, with each faculty member summarizing his or her past year of teaching, research, writing, and living. Alums tell us they can't wait to get the letter, and we often get precious updates on their life stories. Our letters also remind them how to donate to English Department special funds, which help us and our students go to conferences to present papers and creative work (see Giving). We'd love to welcome you, as a donor, to our strong and creative program. 

Kendra Harrisville Srivastava('06) at the lectern
David Faldet and a recent graduate
Professor Diane Scholl (right) and English alum Alicia R. Anderson ('86)