No I Do Not Want To Be An English Teacher
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Student Life

For The Last Time, Majoring In English Does Not Mean I Want To Teach It To Future Generations

Some of us want to be taught about, not teach about others.

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For The Last Time, Majoring In English Does Not Mean I Want To Teach It To Future Generations

For the past couple of days, I've been asked numerous times if I wanted to be a teacher. I know, strange right? You tell people you're in college and what your major is and they just assume you want to become a teacher.

I'm an English major. I enjoy reading books. I enjoy analyzing plots and characters and hidden symbols. I finish essay assignments in no time and edit other papers for fun. I wear cardigans in an array of colors, carry a book everywhere I go, and have large glasses. I have very strong feelings about Shakespeare, Mary Shelley, and Edgar Allan Poe. I appeal to many English major stereotypes, yes, but I do not fit the idea that every English major wants to be a teacher.

Don't get me wrong, English teachers are wonderful and essential to my career, however, it is rather rude to brush off the hundreds of other jobs English majors pursue. English majors can do so much more than teaching. English majors graduate and become librarians, copywriters, editors, publishers, writers, journalists, lawyers, human resource specialists, literary agents, politicians, web content developers, and so much more.

The work it takes to become a graduate with an English degree is essential to many facets of life. English majors spend a lot of time analyzing every piece of text they touch. Many schools require their students to take rhetoric courses which teach students, not only how to analyze text, but how to interact with the world and the people within the world. I took digital rhetoric and contemporary rhetoric last semester. My digital rhetoric class taught me just how hard it is to become a social media influencer, but also how easy it is for any of your information to go out into the world. I hope to use the skills I learned in this class in the future for my career. In contemporary rhetoric, we talked about psychoanalysis, feminism, and people of color living in society today. And yes, I spent a lot of time looking at British Literature from the 1800s.

My point is that English majors are capable of so much. We need to reduce the stigma around the English major. When I tell you my major, don't condescendingly ask "What are you going to do? Be a teacher?" All that does is shine a bad light on the major and on English teachers. Gain a broader perspective and ask me my plans for the future. Ask me which publishing company is my dream office and ask for a signed copy of my book when it's released. Don't just assume I want to be a teacher.

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