High-caliber students from a wide variety of backgrounds are at home in our program.
Recent students received undergraduate degrees from institutions across the country (UC Berkeley, San Diego State, Carleton College) and the world (Turkey, Russia, Germany, Kenya), as well as from schools closer to UMD (UW-Superior, College of St. Scholastica, UMD).
Students are active contributors to the discipline, presenting papers at national conferences and publishing articles in academic journals. Recent graduates have gone on to Ph.D. programs at Georgetown, University of Nebraska Lincoln and Marquette, and UW-Madison.
Others teach English at the secondary and post-secondary level or pursue careers in fields such as publishing and professional writing.
"When I got to UMD, I felt as though, finally, I had found 'my people.' Essentially, it was the first time in my life that I really fit in. The English Studies program helped me to 'spread my wings' and find my niche in life--I discovered I would be happy and productive doing anything related to teaching, writing, or editing. And those are the things I have gone on to do. At UMD I learned from both books and experience. I encountered Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse and HD's Trilogy, both life altering texts for me. I wrote my heart out in the memoir class--what a safe, inviting environment in which to find my true writing." --Liz Mouw
"Graduate school at UMD is one of the best things I have ever done. I have grown so much here. I believe it is important to decide what your goals are for the program and make the curriculum your own. The faculty and staff are easy to work with and very flexible. I am amazed at how students have shaped their experience at UMD to meet their needs and done so successfully. Don't be afraid to ask or be creative. If you take the initiative, the opportunities are boundless. I can't believe it went by so quickly. Don't forget to enjoy it; I certainly did." --Angela George
"I've noticed that grad students who try to juggle work with a full-time school schedule, plus a teaching assistantship, are asking for trouble. I know it's hard financially to devote yourself completely to grad school, especially if you're trying to support a family at the same time, but I really recommend not working another job, if you intend to do this full-time. It will save you some stress and problems." --Jill Hebert
"Take full advantage of the English and Writing Studies faculty. Their knowledge, experience and dedication were tremendous assets in pursuing my interests and thriving in my studies." --Robin Morgan
"Be involved with the graduate school activities and UMD activities as much as possible. UMD offers so many inspiring activities; I was active while I was there, but now I know I wasn't active enough. I miss all the culture and energy that surrounds UMD and its students. Fully enjoy the grad program while you're in it--it goes by too quickly." --Debra Wilson
"Make the program conform to you, instead of conforming to the program." --Jennifer Stolpa
"I think that students need to be aware of the challenges that await. I had never heard of literary theory and that stumped me. The amount of work also surprised me. Be prepared to work and read and write more than you plan." --Kristin Bacher LaTour
"My master's program was also an opportunity to embrace education for education's sake. Friends and acquaintances often asked me at the time, 'What will you do with your degree?' I didn't and still don't have an apt response. Only, it seemed a very good thing to do, and I'm glad I did it. The structure of the classroom setting helped me to write, which is a difficult endeavor for me. Writing one's thoughts and exploring the thoughts of others can be a source of growth and integration. I heartily recommend it." --Char Brown