I have often heard the stigmas that go along with certain majors. The most common one is probably "Your major is X so why are you taking this class?" Well, as a Biochemistry major, I have already heard that question a few times (and the term just began).
First of all, it's the 21st century. Anyone in any field can study ANYTHING. Hence, I'm taking a poetry class alongside my major pre-requisites. If you can't already tell, I love writing. I love chemistry too. So...why can't I take both?
There's something I have learned by taking all these English classes. As a science major, the process required for writing helps me stay organized. For example, I like my chemistry notes organized and that organization helps me with writing papers. My English Composition professor always said, "I can always recognize the science major by the way their paper is organized and by the flow of it." I guess what he meant was that a scientist starts off with the goal, followed by the procedure, and ends with the results. And that is a recipe for a perfect paper too: thesis, body, conclusion.
I have noticed that since I have been writing, I've been able to transcribe my thoughts on paper quicker than I was able to before. I find it easier to break down pieces of literature when I view them as a chemical formula. And I find that very interesting.
Writing helps me get my thoughts together at the end of the day and I have learned to notice the slightest details and changes. Trust me, that goes a long way in the scientific world. As a matter of fact, for any field communication is key. Writing also helps people form coherent and intelligible thoughts into ideas that can be revised and even taught.
Furthermore, the basis of any science course relies on a metacognitive activity which heavily relies upon the articulation of skills that are learned and then communicating and applying them. Metacognitive activity goes beyond the "thinking" part of science and in turn relies heavily on approach and planning towards learning a specific task. Hence, writing in a way also goes beyond just thinking. A writer can describe a simple scenario in an artistic way, which requires them to take a step back from thinking and access a new angle for a reader.
The gears in the brain of a writer are always turning because you never know where the next inspiration will come from. I also read this article from The New York Times, some time back in the day that studied the differences in brain activity between expert writers and novice writers. Although the article is a bit subjective towards the end about how creativity can't be studied, it does stand to prove that writing does, in fact, trigger certain parts of our brain.
Honestly, stop telling science majors they can't take English classes. Stop telling English majors they can't enjoy their science classes.