When I was applying to college, I had absolutely no idea what I wanted to pursue in life. The only thing I originally based my decision on applying as an English major was simply my love for reading. Now, as a second-year English major at UC Davis, I have learned so much more about why I absolutely made the right choice. Here is what I love so much about being an English major in university.
First off, I wanted to attempt to answer the question “Why are you an English Major?” in a nutshell. Here it goes:
I am an English major because it is the only major that allows me to rearrange words in a way that can make whoever is reading feel something. It allows me to use language and syntax to analyze, describe, and paint the world in a new light. I am an English major because I love literature, as it teaches us so much about our past and highlights different possibilities and pathways for how to tackle our future. I believe the world needs more people who can understand the ideas, complexity, and emotions of the authors and worlds that have existed before us, both fictional and real. I am an English major because I want to understand humanity and become more empathetic. I am an English major because I want to help change the world.
That might not be what you expected my “English Major Pitch” to sound like, but it is so, so true. Stories and writing give us the ability to connect with others, and I’ve not only learned how to grow as a writer from my English classes, but also how to grow as a human.
One thing that I learned the most from high school and my first two years of college was my passion for education. After my undergraduate education, I want to go on to become a high school English teacher and share my love of storytelling and literature with all of the students I have the joy to teach and learn from. But this is not to say that teaching is the only pathway to those who major in English. On the contrary, English can apply to virtually any field, from STEM fields, to business, marketing, etc. Learning how to write and communicate in a way that is coherent, consistent, and effective is a skill that any field desperately requires in order to be successful.
So what originally started as my love for timeless young adult novels, manifested into a love and passion for bettering myself, those around me, and those who are going to come after me.
I wanted to tangibly write down my passion behind my major because I know there is such a huge stigma around “useless majors.” As I scroll through my TikTok home page, I come across numerous videos that display college majors that make less money than others, or college majors that people tend to regret majoring in. Most, if not all of the time, my major is listed among these videos. And I have to say, it does hurt knowing that there are people out there who view college majors within some sort of hierarchy.
What I truly want to push forward is no matter what you major in, as long as it is a passion of yours, run with it. Don’t only run, but climb mountains, sail the world, travel to all new kinds of destinations with the passion you have for what you study. Don’t fall under the trap of majoring in something that you think will have the highest gross income or sound the best to others, do what you love. I know that I am.