Monica Hammil
English/Theater Arts double major
Class of 2021

  1. What drew you to the major?

    I think I always knew I was going to be an English major. I was the typical kid in middle and high school who was always carrying a book around with them. In high school I had two really excellent English teachers, one of whom encouraged me to pursue a career path that would allow me to incorporate creative writing. I’ve changed my major a couple of times at CWRU but it was never my English major that changed. Getting a degree in English is really versatile academically and regarding employment. That versatility is one of the most important things I was looking for when choosing a major.

  1. How has your English major prepared you for life after graduation? 

    I won’t graduate until Spring 2021 but I’m confident that my English major is preparing me well to graduate. In creative writing classes that have taught me to revise and then revise and then revise again, I’ve learned to tell the difference between work I’m proud of and work that needs more time. Literature and theory classes have taught me to think critically, to think outside the box, to have kind and thoughtful discussions, and to know when and how to voice my opinions. Being an English major has made me a more confident and thoughtful person overall, and I’m thankful for that growth. I believe that growth is what has prepared me for life after graduation. I’m currently planning to apply to work with AmeriCorps for a gap year and then go on to grad school but I’m flexible so the future is an adventure I’m excited to start.

  1. What is it like being an English major at Case in particular, with its perceived focus on the sciences?

    I love being an English major at CWRU. It does mean that our department is smaller than English departments at other schools, but it also means that our professors are very invested in who we are. My advisor is wonderful, I’ve had the opportunity to take several classes with her and she’s always up to date on how I’m doing. I have friends with STEM majors who might send their advisors an email once a semester but otherwise never speak to them. I love the community that exists in the English department because of the perceived focus on STEM here. I’m the 2020-21 president for Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honors Society, and there are other reading and writing focused clubs too like Writers Writing Words, Case Reserve Review, Mystery Book Club, and others. The focus on STEM helped create the needs for these clubs because while our classes are amazing, the extracurricular activities promote additional ties between English majors and non-English majors who want to participate in our department. We have a solid community, fantastic classes and professors, and if the focus on STEM impacts us in any way, it fosters a drive to prove ourselves which, I would argue, is a positive impact.

  1. Why would you encourage a prospective English major to sign on?

    Even if you want to major in a STEM field or be pre-med, sign up for a second major. The requirements for an English major aren’t too strenuous and the benefits you’ll get out of it will outweigh any potential downsides like heavy course loads. You’ll get an advisor who is invested in your personal well-being and your academic future, you’ll get to choose classes you’re interested in, and you’ll make friends you might otherwise never meet. A humanities major will help you develop as a person and it’ll be the best thing you ever do.