B.A. in Professional Writing
Graduated in 2014
In many ways, I’ve always known what I wanted to do with my life — Write. At first, I thought I was going to pursue Journalism at University Park. But once I realized the numerous opportunities offered in the Professional Writing degree at Berks, I knew I needed to change my academic route. And just as I had expected, the PW major offered me many opportunities and a strong relationship not only among my peers, but with the faculty members as well. I don’t regret the decisions I made. In fact, I am proud of my decision to switch majors — if it wasn’t for PW I wouldn’t have been pushed by my professors to see my full potential. And it is with this newfound potential that I was able to accomplish so much in a such a little amount of time. After graduation, I started working for Evelyn Hill Inc. as a web content designer and writer for the Statue of Liberty gift shop online store. In Fall 2014, I will be attending CUNY the graduate school of Journalism in Manhattan, NY to pursue my Master’s degree in Journalism with a concentration in Business. In the future, I hope to work as a copy editor for either a publication house or a newspaper/magazine.
However, there were many experiences that helped make these things possible. After entering my major my junior year, I worked as a peer tutor in the Writing Center. Dr. Holly Ryan, my former professor and boss at the Writing Center, was one of the first PW faculty members that made my experience in the PW major educational, yet fun. She not only offered me a position at the Writing Center, but she encouraged me and my colleagues to pursue other academic and practical pursuits. As a tutor, I co-presented at the Mid-Atlantic Writing Center Association Conference (MAWCA) in California, PA and in the National Conference of Peer Tutoring in Writing (NCPTW) in Tampa, FL. I believe the hard work and dedication showed through both of my presentations, and that these experiences were not only rewarding then, but continue to reward me now.
My involvement in the PW degree didn’t end in the Writing Center — although it did start there. I also participated in clubs such as HerCampus and Shadow of Birds. During my senior year, I also became involved in the redesign of the PW major. This gave me the opportunity to design a new logo and poster, add social media such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn for more interaction, and design the PW bulletin board. This collaboration between my peers and Dr. Laurie Grobman has helped me focus my energy on something I love — my major. Because the PW program wasn’t just a major I had entered into, it was a family filled with creative, technical, and business writers all willing to express themselves in different forms of writing. And that’s what made my experience at Berks in the PW major feel like a home away from home.
B.A. in Professional Writing
Graduated December 2013
Entering into the workforce after graduation can be daunting, but having a Professional Writing degree to fall back on was my saving grace! Thanks to my classes at Berks, I was armed with a finely-tuned resume and cover letter. I also felt comfortable during job interviews thanks to my 2.5 years of experience as a Writing Center tutor; I had previously helped Dr. Holly Ryan interview potential tutors, so I felt confident in those situations. During my time as a tutor, I attended the Mid-Atlantic Writing Center Association Conferences (MAWCA) in Shippensburg and California, PA, and presented at the International Writing Center Association Conference (IWCA) in San Diego, CA and the National Conference on Peer Tutoring in Writing (NCPTW) in Tampa, FL. I count these experiences as some of the most rewarding of my academic career, and I am certain that the public speaking and interpersonal skills I gained at these conferences will continue to help me for the rest of my life.
I applied and interviewed for many positions after completing my PW degree in December 2013 and was thrilled to be offered a paid internship in early February. I have been working as a Content Writer for The WEBstaurant Store, the country's leading restaurant supply website, for over a month now. I work out of their Lancaster office, writing and editing content for their website and blog. I've also been learning SEO (search engine optimization) techniques, which makes our content more visible for search engines. I'm really enjoying learning new things while at the same time building upon skills I acquired during my time at Berks! The WEBstaurant Store also provides an amazing work environment; with weekly gourmet lunches, ping-pong and Wii tournaments, and fun company-sponsored activities, there's always something cool going on. During my first week, I was lucky enough to be involved in the creation of an office-wide music video!
When I'm not at the office, I have been doing some blog writing and editing for a Boston-based graphic designer. I plan on continuing freelance writing and editing work after the completion of my internship while pursuing my dream of writing Young Adult fiction.
B.A. in Professional Writing
Graduated in 2009
"The Professional Writing Program took my passion for writing and turned it into a career. Professionals are expected to do more with less. Perfecting the fundamentals of writing and being exposed to various elements of business, design, and theory prepared me for high expectations in the workplace.
Since graduation, I have been fortunate to participate in various print and online writing/editing opportunities, which have included developing an award winning community health magazine, creating company website and advertisement content, freelancing in various styles for diverse audiences, as well as producing a range of professional newsletters, pamphlets, and brochures.
The B.A. in Professional Writing offers a customized program, talented and caring professors, and the unique resources students need to be successful in writing-related careers."
pursuing graduate degree
Graduated May 2007
“The courses I have taken in the Professional Writing degree program at Penn State Berks have provided me with a solid foundation in the writing and publishing field. I benefited from all of the courses, but my favorites were Biographical Writing, Advanced Nonfiction, Writing for the Web, Science Writing, Fiction Writing, and American Literature from 1865. I studied various genres, but my preference is writing fiction. During my internship, I worked with local author Dennis Phillips, researching and writing copy for his book, Golfing Communities in the Southeast, published by McFarland & Company in 2004. I began my graduate studies full time with Wilkes University, and I am pursuing my Master of Arts degree in Creative Writing. I am working on my first novel with my mentor, Kaylie Jones, author of A Soldier’s Daughter Never Cries. She is the daughter of the late James Jones who wrote A Thin Red Line and From Here to Eternity. Upon completion of my master’s degree in January 2009, I hope to pursue a career in the publishing world. I have been working for the state for over 11 years as an administrative assistant in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. I am proud to be a graduate of Penn State Berks campus, and the Professional Writing degree has been invaluable to me, opening my future to many possibilities.”
- B.A. in Professional Writing
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