CEO of the PGA of America. Hollywood screenwriter. Prominent investment banker. Pulitzer Prize-nominated playwright. Fulbright winner. Opera singer. Doctor-turned-policymaker. These are just a few examples of the successful alumni who got their start in Notre Dame's Department of English.
Video: English Alumnus Sees Communication as Key to Investment Banking
“I wouldn’t have traded my English major at Notre Dame for any other major,” says Greg Miller, ’87, a managing director at Greenhill and Company, an investment bank in New York City. He attributes his successes to the values, analytical skills, and curiosity that were fostered as a student in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters. Read more.
Arts and Letters Alumnus Carves Out Golf Career
Notre Dame College of Arts and Letters alumnus Peter Bevacqua ’93, was named Chief Executive Officer of the PGA of America in November. When Bevacqua considers the path that led him to a golf-lover’s dream job, the former English and film student credits his liberal arts education at Notre Dame, which gave him the freedom to let his career naturally take shape, he says. Read more.
Theresa Rebeck: Alumna, Playwright, Producer, Novelist
Notre Dame English alumna Theresa Rebeck ’80 says she has a playwright’s brain. The critics and her peers apparently agree: Not only is she an a Pulitzer Prize for Drama nominee and National Theatre Conference Award winner, but Rebeck was also invited to participate in the prestigious Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights Conference in summer 2012 to develop her new play, Fool. Read more.
English Major Pursues Medical Career, Lands on Capitol Hill
During the spring of 2012, Dr. R. Joseph Shonkwiler ’04 reached a crossroads in his career. In a few months he would graduate with a master’s degree in public policy from Princeton University, and he needed to decide his next step. Shonkwiler could return to clinical medicine and finish his surgical residency at New York Presbyterian Hospital, or he could pursue a new career in the public policy field. Read more.
English Alumnus Part of Marvel’s Success
The Spider-Man series, The Avengers, the X-Men series—these films, produced by Marvel Comics’ production company, Marvel Studios, are some of the highest-grossing films of the 21st century. All are based on characters and stories from Marvel comic books, and it’s the job of Bill Rosemann ’93 to keep those characters and stories coming. Rosemann, an editor at Marvel Comics’ New York office, read comics in his youth and majored in English at Notre Dame. Read more.
Video: Liberal Arts Perspective Distinguishes English Alumnus as Opera Singer
“As a singer, I spend all my time dealing with texts. I’m singing poetry, I’m singing theatre, I’m singing in different languages, and all my training at Notre Dame helped me immensely for that,” says Paul Appleby ’05, and English and music major who starred in The Metropolitan Opera’s fall 2013 production of Two Boys. Read more.
Video: English Alumna Pursues Passion as a TV Writer/Producer
“After graduating Notre Dame, would I have ever said, ‘Oh, I’m gonna be a TV writer in Hollywood?’ Never in a million years,” says Linda Gase, a Notre Dame graduate with a degree in English. She is currently co-executive producer of Switched at Birth, a one-hour drama on ABC Family. Gase has also written for ER, The District, Crossing Jordan, and Army Wives. She credits her strength as a writer to the time she spent at Notre Dame developing her critical thinking skills and examining her point of view. “The biggest challenge of a writer is to trust your voice, and I feel that at Notre Dame, I really honed my voice.” Read more.
Graduate Molly Hayes Awarded George Mitchell Scholarship
Molly Hayes, who majored in English and Arabic and graduated from Notre Dame in 2008, has been awarded a 2014 George Mitchell Scholarship.Awarded to only 12 people every year, the George Mitchell Scholarship is designed to connect future American leaders with Ireland, and provides tuition, accommodations, and living, and travel stipends. Hayes is currently the Kenya Desk Officer at the U.S. Department of State, where she led the Washington-based crisis response management for the September terrorist attack at Westgate mall in Nairobi, Kenya. She will use the scholarship to pursue a master’s degree in postcolonial and world literatures at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. Read more.
Alumnus Tests Limits of Body and Mind
Imagine you have just completed 26.2 miles of running, with legs like Jell-O, a headache, and worn-out lungs. Now imagine running that same marathon in the searing heat of the Sahara Desert or the blistering cold of the North Pole. That’s what Notre Dame College of Arts and Letters alumnus Michael Collins ’87, ’91 M.A. does. In addition to being an “ultra-marathoner,” Collins, who has a Ph.D. in English, is also a successful novelist and playwright. Read more.
English Alumna Receives Prestigious Scholarship to Study in Ireland
When Caitlin Myron ’13 first came to Notre Dame she had an interest in the Irish culture from her childhood, but never imagined it was something she would have the opportunity to study. Four years later, the English major is beginning a master’s degree in Modern Irish at the National University of Ireland. Read more.
Alumnus Finds Success as Hollywood Screenwriter
Behind the mask, the cape, and the suit of every superhero stands a seemingly ordinary individual blessed with an incredible gift. Behind Captain America stands Stephen McFeely ’91. Part of the screenwriting duo behind the Captain America movies, McFeely has worked in the Marvel movie universe since 2008. Read more.
Alumnus Jim Greene: A Career in Service to Others
A conversation with American Studies Professor Emeritus Ronald Weber helped change the life of Notre Dame alumnus Jim Greene ’85, today a homelessness policy adviser for the Boston Public Health Commission and director of the Boston Emergency Shelter Commission. Greene, who double majored in American Studies and English, says his Arts and Letters undergraduate degree has served him well in his work in counseling, outreach, and program and policy development with homeless adults and families in Boston. Read more.
English Majors Thrive in Diverse Careers
You can find Notre Dame graduates with degrees in English almost everywhere—and not just working in the classroom as teachers or professors. Indeed, according to a survey of alumni, they are thriving in a broad range of professions. Consider, as just one sample of alumni success, the members of a virtual departmental dynasty: brothers Greg ’87, Jeff ’89, and Mark Miller ’05. All three Danville, Pa., natives received English degrees before moving into careers that include finance, medicine, publishing, and higher education. Read more.