There are a great number of opportunities that you can pursue with an English degree. I am currently a freelance writer and a certified Technical Writer, and I can tell you about many of the possible avenues you can pursue in this particular area.
Many of the post English major opportunities have moved into online markets. This is particularly true with many social media outlets. Online companies utilize English majors to develop written proposals and to help them manage their online media resources. Some are placed in public relations or marketing positions. Blogging seems to be very popular in the present market, so there are many job opportunities for English majors in this area.
Technical Writing: There is a need for composition in the areas of manuals, websites, and technical communications. I obtained a technical writing certification because I wrote a large number of manuals and documents in my position at a local college. So this might be an area to research further.
Public Relations: There is a need for writers in the area of online media, magazines, newspapers, radio and television. Creative writing skills are required for many of these positions because public press releases come from these particular entities.
Attorney of Law Positions: I also have a certificate in paralegal studies because I used to be a police officer. By taking legal writing courses I was better able to effectively communicate with the attorneys who worked on my particular cases. Writing skills are greatly needed in the legal profession. This includes the ability to write briefs, contracts, memorandums and courtroom documentation. The need to be able to write a form of legal language (IRAC or FIRAC), which is not only required within the industry, but also needed to pass the bar exam.
Grant Writer: These writer must be able to write in a way in which they can convince constituents of their need for public or private funding. This includes an ability to review, edit and modify documents for the organization they are writing for. This can include non-profit organizations, or even arts and cultural entities.
Fundraisers can also fit into this category. Writers, who fundraise, develop effective communications and media to obtain funding from potential donors.
Librarian: Individuals who work in libraries must have good English and reading skills. They must know how to utilize resources within the library system and be able to guide library patrons to those resources.
Editor and Content Manager: Editors must be able to accurately review submissions for magazines and book publishers. There are also opportunities with online freelance sites where writers can provide feedback and editing for customers, companies and other organizations within their organizations network.
Human Resources: I was responsible for developing my organizations policy and procedure manual for our employees. I also developed advertisements for job openings and wrote training materials for staff development. So there are available openings in human resources in both the public and private sector.
Teaching: There is a great need for teachers in both the secondary schools, colleges and in English as a Second Language (ESL) courses. Matter of fact I know one individual, who joined the Peace Corps, and is now teaching the English language to students in East Africa. There are also many opportunities in Asia, because many of these countries emphasize learning English as a way to be able to compete in the world markets.
So you can see there are many possible opportunities for you to pursue in this particular area. I hope this has been helpful in your future job research.
Paul recommends the following next steps:
- Determine which area of English you would like to specialize in (Creative Writing, Technical Writing, Business Comminication) etc..
- Rsearch which jobs match your specific areas of interest.
- Review online freelance writing sites, to see what kind of opportunities and demand there is for specific writing skills.
- See an academic advisor or a job advisor at a college or university to determine which path you would like to pursue.