School of Arts and Sciences

English Alumni Speak

“Being part of the English Department at PBA helped me discover my passion for editing, my love for books and everything that goes into making them. I got to work directly with other students in class to help them clarify their thoughts and to work as a team with peers and other departments at PBA to create actual print publications with the Living Waters Review. I especially loved grammar classes - I learned that thinking critically and working within a specific structure didn't mean that I couldn't think creatively and approach problems from unexpected angles. These skills were crucial to my success in grad school, where I continued to work directly with authors and on group projects, and in my career, where I'm constantly bridging the gap between other departments, business needs, publisher requests, and system constraints. Every day, the skills I need the most are the ones I learned to value in the English department: clear communication, working well in teams of people with diverse needs, and finding creative solutions to problems when there seems to be no solution.”

-- Katherine Konynenbelt, alumna

eBook Content Team Lead
EBSCO Information Services

“When I began at Palm Beach Atlantic, literary study was nowhere on my radar. I owe it to the intelligent, enthusiastic and caring faculty members of the English department for showing me the error of my ways. They taught me how to think and write well and how to partake in the thrilling life of literature. Majoring in English at PBA thoroughly prepared me for graduate school and for numerous postgraduate careers.”  

-- Michael Von Cannon, alumnus and Ph.D. candidate at Louisiana State University

Author of the annual chapters on F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway for American Literary Scholarship (Duke University Press)

“My experience as an English major at PBA was extremely positive: I developed lifelong friendships with colleagues, benefitted from the mentorship of a number of professors, and developed the expertise needed to successfully pursue a Ph.D. in English. In fact, for both my M.A. and Ph.D. I was accepted into a number of renowned English programs, including those of Carnegie Mellon University, The Ohio State University, and the University of Iowa. Even if you're not planning on undertaking postgraduate studies in literature, the English major at PBA is extremely worthwhile! It will provide you with the writing and critical thinking skills prized by many different fields.”

-- Jennifer Janechek, alumna and Ph.D. candidate at the University of Iowa

Co-author of the book "Rhetoric Matters." 2nd Ed. (Bedford, 2012)
Editor of ebook "Network, Collaborate, Compose: Writing in the Digital Age"
Editor for website Writing Commons, An Open-Education Resource for Writers
Senior Editor of book, "Negotiating Writing Spaces" (Mayden-NcNeil, 2011)

“English majors often get asked what they plan to do with their degrees. What most people don’t realize is that law schools, medical schools, and several other kinds of graduate programs actively seek out English majors. The reason is not hard to find. As an English major at PBA, I learned how to write and speak effectively, think critically, and develop empathy for others. My degree prepared me not only for graduate work but also to present myself as an articulate professional in a variety of settings. This would not have been possible without committed professors. I am grateful that I still have the support of several of them years after graduation.”

-- Jordan Von Cannon, alumna and Ph.D. candidate at Louisiana State University

HASTAC Scholar
Humanities, Arts, Sciences, Technology Alliance at LSU
Assistant Project Manager for “Poe’s Magazine World: Glimpses of Antebellum Print Culture”
Graduate Assistant to the Louisiana Women’s Policy and Research Commission