Student Opportunities

This page showcases the many exciting opportunities—clubs, activities, publications, research projects, scholarships, internships, awards, and more—available to English majors at WCU. These activities can help you expand your learning experience beyond the classroom, develop valuable career skills, express yourself in new ways, and collaborate with others who share your passions. Get involved!  For information about opportunities available to our M.A. graduate students, please visit our Graduate School page.

Activities and Clubs


Undergraduate Research

Our students work frequently with individual faculty members on research and creative projects. Here are some of the research opportunities available to you as an English major:

West Chester Center for Book History
West Chester Center for Book History

West Chester Center for Book History is dedicated to providing a multidimensional, interdisciplinary forum for the history and study of the written word.

PA Literary and Cultural Heritage Map
PA Literary and Cultural Heritage Map

The Literary and Cultural Heritage Map of Pennsylvania is a graphic display of the literary history of our Commonwealth.

Student Awards and Scholarships

The English Department is proud to offer several awards and scholarships in recognition of the outstanding achievements of our students. Honorees are announced at various times throughout the fall and spring semesters and are usually recognized at both the English Department's year-end student reception & awards ceremony and the College of Arts & Humanities annual Student Recognition Ceremony. Recipients are chosen by English Department faculty. View the complete list of English student awards, scholarships, and past winners.


The English Department encourages all of its B.A. majors to pursue internships. The advantages are numerous: internships enable you to apply your reading and writing skills to real workplace situations, make informed decisions about your career plans, and build valuable contacts. Our students have completed an exciting array of internships—in journalism, publishing, broadcasting, marketing, public relations, social media, and more—both on and off campus. Read More about English Department internships.

Study Abroad

As readers and thinkers with a strong affinity for the workings of language and culture, English majors are often naturally drawn to the experience of living and learning in another country. Our students have studied abroad in England, Ireland, Latin America, and many other places around the world. If you're interested in studying abroad, we urge you to start by consulting with your academic advisor and also making time to visit WCU's Global Engagement Office.


The English Department supports efforts to live and learn sustainably. We offer several courses focused on sustainability and environmentalism, including:

  • WRH 310: Written Rhetoric: Power, Politics, & Environmental Writing
  • ENG 305: Environmental/Experiential Writing: Taking Action

The English Department offers courses also frequently emphasize environmental themes:

  • ENG 400 Research Seminars
  • WRT 220: Critical Writing

English faculty active in sustainability efforts include Professors Buckelew, Burns, Lalicker, Patriarca, Rademaekers, and Wanko. To learn more about sustainability initiatives taking place at WCU and beyond, please contact those faculty members or WCU's Sustainability Advisory Council.


The organizations and programs listed below all bear strong ties to the English Department. Many are directed—or were founded—by English Department faculty; others operate under the aegis of English or benefit from especially strong participation by English faculty and students. In all cases, these affiliations promote values central to English Studies, enrich the learning experiences of our students, and contribute to the cultural life of the university and the larger community.

Poetry Center

WCU Poetry Center
The WCU Poetry Center promotes the study and appreciation of poetry, particularly traditional poetic forms. Founded in 2000, the Center offers a diverse slate of activities and programs—including a prestigious annual Poetry Conference—that helps to expand its mission of bringing poetry to an ever-widening audience.

College Literature

College Literature: A Journal of Critical Literary Studies
College Literature has long been one of the premier literary-studies journals in North America, publishing original and innovative scholarly research. Founded in 1974, the journal has its editorial offices at WCU.

Writing Center

University Writing Center
The University Writing Center offers writing free writing consultation services to all members of the WCU community. The Center is directed by English faculty and regularly employs English majors and graduate students as writing tutors.


iCAMP Academy
iCAMP is a free summer media academy offering Philadelphia high school juniors and seniors the opportunity to work as media developers-in-residence for one week each summer at WCU. Students produce films, games, podcasts, and websites that effect meaningful social change. The program's founder and director is Dr. Laquana Cooke, a professor of Digital Rhetoric in the English Department at WCU.

West Chester Writing Project

West Chester Writing Project
The West Chester Writing Project (formerly the Pennsylvania Writing & Literature Project) is one of the oldest and largest sites of the National Writing Project. Founded in 1980, WCWP works in multi-dimensional ways to improve the teaching of writing and literature in schools and communities.

Poetry by the Sea

Poetry by the Sea: A Global Conference
Founded in 2014 by our late colleague Professor Kim Bridgford, Poetry by the Sea takes place each May in Madison, Connecticut, right on the beach on Long Island Sound. The conference's aim is to embrace the poetic excellence in a range of constituency groups and voices.

Fredrick Douglas Institute

Frederick Douglass Institute
WCU's Frederick Douglass Institute seeks to advance multicultural studies across the university curriculum and sponsors research, programs, awards, and teaching that honor the legacy of Frederick Douglass. The Institute was founded in 1995 by Emeritus Professor of English C. James Trotman.

Women and Gender Studies

Women's & Gender Studies Program
WCU's Women's & Gender Studies Program shares with the English Department a commitment to empowering students to challenge preconceptions about race, class, gender, and sexual orientation. English professors have served as past WGS program directors, and many teach for the program as affiliated faculty.

Yes Program

Rustin Urban Community Change Axis (RUCCAS)
Created by English professor Hannah Ashley, RUCCAS comprises both the Urban Community Change (RUX) major and the interdisciplinary Youth Empowerment & Urban Studies (YES) minor. Both programs offer students across campus the opportunity to work with youth in urban settings in hands-on, community-engaged ways that can help to bring about real social change.

Aralia Press

Aralia Press
Aralia Press teaches students at WCU the art of fine printing, including the use of hand-set type and letterpress. Founded in 1983 by Emeritus Professor of English Mike Peich, the press is housed on the fifth floor of the FHG Library.

Book History

West Chester Center for Book History
The West Chester Center for Book History, founded by English professor Eleanor Shevlin, sponsors courses, workshops, talks, seminars, book-making, and a graduate certificate in publishing, all as part of an effort to provide a multidimensional, interdisciplinary forum for the history and study of the written word.