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Creative Writing

CREATIVE EXPRESSION IS AN ART, A TALENT AND A SKILL – AT ONU, YOU’LL DEVELOP ALL OF THESE. YOU’LL DISCOVER WAYS TO TURN YOUR IMAGINATION AND YOUR PASSION FOR THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE INTO A CAREER THAT BRINGS YOU A LIFETIME OF FULFILLMENT.

EXPRESS YOURSELF

Here, you’ll join a close-knit family of English-language lovers. From the time you arrive on campus until you graduate, you’ll be guided by the same faculty advisor. You’ll enjoy small class sizes and amazing friendships with your fellow English majors. Our dedicated professors will get to know you. They will support you in your coursework, creative endeavors, internships, and post-graduate or career preparations. They will become personally invested in your success and will open doors for you. 

As a creative writing major, you’ll take liberal arts courses and write across a wide range of genres like poetry, fiction, drama and screenwriting. You’ll also get the chance to write and to work on University publications, including Polaris Literary Magazine, ONU’s undergraduate literary magazine; the Northern Review, ONU’s newspaper; and The English Department Newsletter.

Our small setting equals big opportunity. From assisting a professor with research to attending professional conferences (like the Association of Writers and Writing Programs conference), from taking a master class with a renowned author to studying abroad, you’ll discover countless opportunities to expand your horizons and build your résumé.

Upon graduation, you’ll have everything you need for success – advanced writing skills, a portfolio of work, savvy “real-world” skills like teamwork and leadership, and confidence. You’ll be ready to flex your creative muscles wherever your career takes you!

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OPPORTUNITY ABOUNDS

CROWNING GLORY

Your senior year, you’ll complete a yearlong capstone project – the crowning glory of your four years at ONU. Projects range from a collection of poetry to chapters in a novel, from a nonfiction memoir to the creation of a website. You’ll create a draft of your project, submit it to a team of faculty reviewers, and complete revisions based on feedback. In the end, you’ll have a completed work worthy of accolades.

OH, THE PLACES YOU’LL GO

Imagine traveling to Boston, Denver or Chicago – all expenses paid – with your English professors and fellow students to attend a professional conference, or spending the summer in Oxford, Cambridge or South Korea studying different cultures. We believe a well-rounded education includes opportunities to travel, experience new places and stretch your comfort zone. These opportunities are here for you to grab.

AUTHORS IN THE HOUSE

Each year, we bring nationally and internationally acclaimed writers like Heather Christle, Matt Hart, Anthony Madrid and Carol Drinkwater to campus to share their journeys and conduct writing workshops for students. You’ll have the chance to meet these masters of the craft and soak up the knowledge they impart.



Abbie Sterling

THINK SUCCESS

ABBIE STERLING BA WITH A MAJOR IN ENGLISH ’12

“The idea that an English degree is ‘impractical’ is a fading notion. As an English major, you learn how to think outside the box and how to interpret the world around you – skills that impress any employer,” she says. “At Disney, I have the chance to use my creativity and skillset to bring beloved Disney stories and characters to life on a daily basis.”

Abbie Sterling turned her love of writing into a career at one of the world’s greatest storytelling companies. She graduated from ONU in 2012, majoring in creative writing with minors in professional writing and marketing. At ONU, she served as co-editor of Polaris Literary Magazine, spent a summer helping with the Sakae program for Japanese students, studied abroad in South Korea, and tutored international students. Today, she’s an executive communications specialist at The Walt Disney Company. She supports senior leaders in various business units with speeches, correspondence, video scripts, and creative presentations and graphics. 

OUTCOMES AND COURSES

SOLID OUTCOMES

  • Creative Colleges: A Guide for Students, Actors, Artists, Dancers, Musicians and Writers ranks ONU a top 200 program for creative students.
  • Over the past five years, an average of 88 percent of our English majors were employed in full-time employment, and 100 percent of those who applied to graduate school or law school were accepted within six months of graduation. 
  • Our graduates get accepted into top-notch graduate and law schools like Columbia, Duke, Vanderbilt, Northwestern and Ohio State University.

COURSES

You will need 120 credit hours to earn a B.A. in creative writing. With only 37 hours in the major, it is easy to combine a creative writing major with another major or minor. Along with university core courses, in your major you will be taking a wide range of writing courses in different genres, including:

  • Intermediate poetry
  • Advanced poetry
  • Intermediate fiction
  • Advanced fiction
  • Screenwriting
  • Playwriting
  • Creative nonfiction

WHERE WILL YOU END UP?

POSSIBLE JOBS

  • Writer 
  • Editor 
  • Copywriter 
  • Reporter 
  • Public relations or marketing professional 
  • English as a second language (ESL) specialist 
  • Lawyer 
  • Government professional 
  • Librarian 
  • Business or nonprofit manager 
  • Creative arts administrator
  • Blog writer/editor

ALUMNI SUCCESS

Check out where some of our recent creative writing students have ended up: managing editor at Deloitte Research/Pearson Custom Publishing in Boston; content editor at Shmoop.com; communications associate at the American Humanist Association in Washington, D.C.; communications specialist at Comfort Keepers in Los Angeles; administrative officer for the Supreme Court of Ohio in Columbus.