North Central College - Naperville, IL

English Studies

Why choose English Studies at North Central College?

Using language effectively—reading deeply and writing clearly—are skills developed by a major in English Studies and are essential for a wide range of careers in business, teaching, law and administration. English Studies encompasses the interpretation of literature, film, and a wide variety of other texts as well as creative writing, and courses such as writing for social change and editing, writing and publishing. As you interpret historical and contemporary texts and films, you’ll reflect upon national and global issues and draw upon theoretical concepts from a range of related disciplines. You will polish your writing skills in all English courses, ranging from literature to creative writing to rhetoric and composition. You can gain practical experience as a tutor in our Writing Center, as a writer or editor for the award-winning student newspaper The Chronicle, student humor magazine The Kindling and student literary magazine 30 N., or as an intern in a variety of businesses requiring strong writers and analysts. You may pursue independent research projects and undergraduate conference presentations. You’ll top off your major with a senior portfolio compiled from your best work in either upper-level writing courses in specific genres or in-depth literature seminars on special topics, major authors or particular genres.

You can also:

  • Earn an optional upper-level concentration in writing or literature.
  • Work toward your teaching license by also majoring in secondary education.
  • Gain practical experience in student-run publications (newspaper, humor magazine, journal of creative writing).
  • Join the Sigma Tau Delta English honor society and participate in nationwide undergraduate conferences and local social and service activities.
  • Combine English with other majors, like political science or business, to prepare for graduate or law school or business careers.
  • Conduct independent research requiring travel or special resources and present your results at local and national academic conferences with the support of a Richter Grant.


Gregory H. Wolf, North Central College Dennis and Jean Bauman Professor of the Humanities, publishes article, edits sports-related book, gives radio interview.
Luis Tello '17, Lincoln Laureate recipient
North Central College faculty name Luis Tello, a senior sociology major and urban/suburban studies minor, as its 2016 Lincoln Laureate recipient.
Sara Eaton, professor of English emerita
The campus community is mourning the death of Professor of English Emerita Sara Eaton, who passed Friday, Nov. 11, 2016.



  • Technology representative, Callaway Golf, Oswego, IL
  • Journalist, Morris Daily Herald, Morris, IL
  • Podcasting intern, 670 The Score, Chicago, IL
  • Writing, social media intern, Humanitarian Service Project, Carol Stream, IL
  • Research and copyediting intern, Fifth Wednesday Journal, Lisle, IL
  • Journalism intern, Journal & Topics Newspapers, Des Plaines, IL
  • Digital media intern, NextMedia360, Plainfield, IL
  • Production intern, WBBM 105.9FM/780AM, Chicago, IL
  • Media relations itern, Chicago Slaughter, Hoffman Estates, IL
  • Marketing intern, Grundy County Board, Morris, IL

Graduate Schools

Recent graduates in English have been accepted at:

  • Northwestern University
  • McGill University
  • Loyola University
  • University of Texas
  • University of Minnesota
  • Northern Michigan University
  • Creighton University
  • Butler University
  • University of Montana
  • University of South Dakota
  • West Virginia University


Recent graduates in English include:

  • Director of marketing and communications, American Red Cross of Greater Chicago, Chicago
  • Art gallery owner, Arnould Gallery, Marblehead, MA
  • Assistant professor of English with an emphasis on digital literacy, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
  • High school teacher at East Aurora High School
  • Administrator for The Center for Cultural Exchange
  • Lawyer at Raymond G. Wigell, Ltd.
English Studies

Heather grew up playing Scrabble and reading books with her mother. She formed a passion for literature that transformed into a potential career.

“English was the only major that fit my brain and creative needs,” she says. “Writing’s my greatest interest, which I’ll continue practicing after graduation.”

Heather interned with Shelly Porcellino, North Central College’s director of grants. She gained hands-on experience with technical writing and practical research. She was co-editor of the North Central Review, the College’s literary magazine, where she learned about design, production and distribution.

Heather aspires to combine her creative and technical writing skills after graduation....

English Studies major

Katherine’s goal in selecting a college was to find one small enough so her professors would know who she was. “I wanted to feel like my opinions and my presence were going to be important. North Central’s English faculty members are very encouraging and supportive.”

In addition to majoring in English Studies with a concentration in writing, Katherine’s other passion is theatre. She wrote and directed the play “Under the Circumstances,” which was selected by North Central theatre faculty as part of the College’s Student Director Series.

“An experience that had the biggest effect on me was studying abroad at the University of Essex. I will never forget those friends. Studying abroad gave me the...

English Studies: Concentration in Writing major

The College Scholars program, robust study abroad programs, and variety of research grants attracted Laurel to North Central. Once here, she took advantage of every opportunity. Interested in public policy journalism, she traveled to London to study British impressions of the 2008 U.S. presidential campaign. She attended a taping of the “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” to research the culture of political satire. And she presented the results of both projects at the National Conferences for Undergraduate Research.

Co-editor-in-chief of North Central’s student newspaper, The Chronicle, Laurel...

English Studies major

During a transfer visit day at North Central College, Kira realized she found the right place to finish her degree. “I remember experiencing the college tour, but the standout part of the day was talking to knowledgeable people from the different departments and offices. I was so impressed when I met with the financial aid representative because I felt other schools weren’t interested in helping a nontraditional student like me afford a quality education.”

Other factors for choosing North Central were location, liberal arts curriculum and knowledgeable faculty.  “The school had an amazing reputation and cared about each of the students.”

Kira developed strong relationships with many English...

English Studies major, Writing emphasis

Nikki has always been inspired by words. Now she can use her degree to inspire others.

“A major in English gives you the unique opportunity to hear the voices and stories of your peers while sharing your own.”

Nikki is on track to utilize her English degree as a future pastor in the United Methodist Church. She received a full tuition scholarship to Boston University’s School of Theology. At North Central, she gained practical writing and communication skills, which are highly useful in any field. The versatility of an English degree means there’s something for everyone.

“Even if you don’t enjoy reading, someone wrote the lines of every movie script, crafted the lyrics to your favorite song...

English Studies major

It didn’t take long for Troy to realize that a North Central education involves much more than simply attending class. The English studies major started writing for the College’s student newspaper during his freshman year, and additional opportunities poured in from his advisors and professors week after week.

“My email inbox is often crowded with notifications (about internships),” he says. “If you’re looking for opportunities to get real-world experience for a future career, you’ll find them here.”

Troy would like to write for a major newspaper, magazine or website after he graduates. North Central’s emphasis on...