Joe Albernaz

Assistant Professor of English and Comparative Literature, Columbia University

“I benefited so much from my years studying in and around Greenlaw Hall, encouraged by the incredible professors, the variety of unique programs for undergraduates (like the PIT Journal, or studying Shakespeare in London and Oxford), and the active literary scene around campus, especially in poetry. The experience was unforgettable, and not to mention the best possible preparation for the path I chose to follow of becoming an English professor.”


Courtney Coppage

Assistant Editor at Technica Editorial

“Arriving at UNC, I thought ‘old’ and even American literature was boring, but it didn’t take long for me to realize that I was the one who made literature boring—that there was something new and exciting in all of my classes. Dr. Carlston was the first to teach me what reading means; the differences between summary, description, evaluation, and analysis; and how to express myself well.”


Duncan Culbreth

Assistant Principal, Capstone Scholars Program, University of South Carolina

“I chose a career in higher education, informed…by my love for the community that I found through pursuing Honors in Creative Writing…I learned how to hone my craft—and that such a thing existed—with eight fine poets and an incredible teacher, and it set my momentum for the rest of my working and writing career.”


Arthur J. DeBaugh

Attorney at Bell, Davis & Pitt

“The English professors with whom I studied taught me how to write, how to analyze a text, and how to think critically and arrange thoughts logically for my readers—skills which have been invaluable to me as an attorney. My English major prepared me for law school better than any discipline that I can imagine.”


Sarah Dessen

New York Times Bestselling Author

“As an English major at Carolina…I learned to really understand the layers of meaning in the works I studied. In doing so, I also gained a greater understanding of what it was that made those words speak to me.”


David Gardner

Founder of The Motley Fool, a multimedia financial-services company

The English Department at Carolina ” led me toward a love of literature, the liberal arts, unconventional wisdom, humor, a certain sophomore in my creative writing class who’s my wife now of 27 years.”


Shonda Goward

Academic Director, Carolina Covenant and Achieve Carolina

“Dr. Coleman’s course was one of the most rigorous I completed at Carolina. He continually pushed me to “think harder, Ms. Goward” and move beyond simple analysis to an understanding of the broader historical and sociological implications of the texts we read in class…After 9/11 I wanted to make a stronger impact on my community, and I thought back to how much Dr. Coleman influenced me to go beyond what is required and to develop intellectually. I went back to school [….] and recently completed my doctoral degree in education at George Washington University.”


Alane Salierno Mason

Alane Salierno Mason

Vice President & Senior Editor at W.W. Norton & Company

“Our whole society needs more people who can see things from many points of view, who can inhabit someone else’s world in the ways that only literature—especially foreign literature—enables us to do.”


Jonathan McClure

MFA and Poet

“I can’t speak highly enough about the English major at UNC. When I started college I had no intention of majoring in English, but I fell in love with the major after taking a course on Renaissance literature, with a special focus on poetry…I can’t imagine a major that would provide better preparation for life after graduation.”


Mary Pope Osborne

Author of children’s books, including the Magic Tree Series

“Long ago, in a poetry class in the English department at UNC, I gained the confidence to put thoughts and images on a page and share them with others. In that class, I began my love affair with the English language, with the magic and mystery of words. Since then, I’ve published over a hundred children’s books.”


Joanna Pearson

Psychiatrist, Poet, YA Author

“Whereas in many of my other classes, I learned facts or theories or mechanisms of action, in my English classes, I learned how to think analytically and articulate my ideas. I also thought a lot about character—what people want, what motivates them, why they do what they do, their backstory—and language as a tool, both of which have turned out to be awfully relevant now to me as a psychiatrist.”


John Powell

Candidate of Masters of Public Policy at John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard and MBA at Stanford University Graduate School of Business

“From isolated hamlets in Afghanistan to America’s inner cities, I find myself relying on the analytical skills I learned while unpacking Milton with Reid Barbour and interpreting twentieth century poetry with Bill Harmon. The key, then and now, is understanding people at the most fundamental level through their stories and through their language.”


Eric Propst

Licensed Clinical Psychologist

“The close study of character, conflict, passions, motives, self-deception, and self-reflection in the world’s great literature is as foundational to a career as a psychotherapist as the study of anatomy is to a surgeon or scales are to a composer.”