Department of English, College of LAS, University of Illinois

Graduate Studies: Job Placement

Our  program is designed to provide students with the training in research  and teaching that they need to obtain academic jobs. We consistently place more  than half of our literature and film Ph.D.s in tenure-track jobs. We are especially pleased to report that every one of our recent writing studies Ph.D.s has secured a tenure-track position.

Due in part to the limited number of tenure-track jobs, some of the students who enter our M.A. program decide not to complete the Ph.D. degree. Most students who leave with the M.A. find that it provides them with strong leverage in other areas of work or study; in recent years these areas have included law school, library school, technical writing, academic administration, secondary and primary education, computing, entrepreneurship, and union  organizing.

A recent national study by the Woodrow Wilson Foundation  has discovered that, ten years after winning their Ph.D.s in English, almost all degree-holders with non-academic jobs were glad that they had attended graduate school, convinced that it had equipped them with  skills vital to their current careers. We work to counter rocky market conditions by offering sustained and vigorous support for our students on the academic job market. A dedicated faculty placement officer conducts one-on-one advising on preparing job materials, organizes mock interviews for  job-seekers, and offers individualized support all the way through negotiations, making our placement service a model across campus and  nationwide.