•Our annual Literary Festival brings accomplished writers from a variety of genres to campus each year. Besides offering public readings, these authors interact with creative writing students in small group workshops. Festivals hosted such noted authors as Randall Silvis, Robert Coover, Li-Young Lee, Robert Bly, Grace Paley, Martin Espada, Alicia Suskin Ostriker, Larry Heinemann, Peter Coyote, Francine Prose, Terry Bisson, Joy Harjo and Sonia Sanchez.
•Students contribute to Lumen, the university’s award-winning creative arts magazine featuring writing, photography and graphic design
•The Lumen staff holds frequent open mic opportunity for students to read their own creative works, culminating in a reading of the works of literature published in the Lumen.
•Every year, the department holds the P. Barry McAndrew Writing Contest to honor the best undergraduate essay on literature
•Theatre Appreciation Club is housed within this department and has upwards of 40 members who support campus productions.
•Mercyhurst is proud to have a chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, an international honor society formed in 1924 to recognize graduate and undergraduate English majors, minors, or faculty who have achieved high standards of excellence in their chosen linguistic or literary fields.
oThe Beta Upsilon chapter of Sigma Tau Delta was established at Mercyhurst in February of 1986, and has a thriving membership. Candidates are selected by the English department and student advisers during the spring term each year. Induction ceremonies are held each fall.
oThe department has had over twenty of our students present their original creative and critical work at the annual Sigma Tau Delta convention
oOur students have been published in the international publications, The Rectangle, The Sigma Tau Delta Review and Mind Murals (Easter Region’s publication)
•Junior and senior English majors have the opportunity to do an internship for 3 credits. Internships are available through the Career Services Office and have included:
oAssisting in the writing and editing of publications for local businesses and organizations, including American Cancer Society and United Way
oGaining experience in Public Relations through promoting charitable organizations such as hospitals, as well as working with TV and radio stations
oDeveloping knowledge in political fields through assisting area congressmen
•As one of the largest departments on campus, the English department includes 10 full-time faculty members with diverse backgrounds in their areas of specialty.
•Small class sizes at Mercyhurst University and the faculty’s open-door policy allow for a great deal of contact between students and faculty.
•English is a flexible degree with many career opportunities. Our recent graduates are:
•Working towards M.A., M.F.A., or a Ph.D.
•Attending Law School
•Working for publishing companies
•Working with Teach for America
•Working as a College Admissions Counselor
•Working in public relations and marketing
•Working in education at private schools, public schools and universities
•Working as self-employed/freelance writers
•Working at libraries and museums
•Working in the media: Newspapers, magazines, online, broadcast (TV/radio)
•Working a nonprofit organization involved with literacy