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The written word in all its glory and complexity is the world of the student of English. Students may focus on either literature or writing, and those who love European culture before 1600 can explore KSC’s new Medieval and Early Modern Studies program.

Program Overview

What ends up on the page is only part of the story. In English, students study the past, present, and future of the written word, from Augustine to Chaucer, from Shakespeare to Austen, from Dostoevsky to Baldwin, from Achebe to Erdrich. Literature raises important questions about humanity, justice, and morality, and, as a result, has the unique power of both reflecting and transforming the place, time, and culture in which it was created. In short: literature matters, and it always will. More about Program Overview



Over a third of our graduates receive a dual degree in English and Secondary Education, and another third are enrolled in the Elementary Education program. Many students choose a minor in addition to the major; we offer a thriving writing minor as well as a new Medieval and Early Modern Studies minor.

Department Faculty

Alice B. Fogel, New Hampshire Poet Laureate
Alice B. Fogel, New Hampshire Poet Laureate

Faculty in the English department are literary scholars, creative writers, and specialists in rhetoric and composition. In addition to teaching, faculty in English serve as mentors and advisors, encouraging majors to apply for awards and scholarships, to join our local chapter of the English Honor society, to study abroad, or to enroll in internships. More about Department Faculty

Medieval and Early Modern Studies

Medieval and Early Modern Studies

The Medieval and Early Modern Studies program encourages students to celebrate the diversity and richness of the Middle Ages and the early modern period while promoting scholarship for both faculty and students. More about Medieval and Early Modern Studies

Life after KSC: What Our Grads Are Doing

What do students do with a major in English? Our students have taken their rich analytical and creative problem-solving skills, their ability to write well, and their enthusiasm for language arts to further study at impressive graduate programs or to jobs as writers, editiors, teachers, journalists, lawyers, business people, and a wealth of other professions where their ability to write, think, and communicate well are critical assets. They’ve shown that their degree in English provides an intellectual background and readily transferable skills for a wide range of personal and professional endeavors. More about Life after KSC: What Our Grads Are Doing

What made the biggest difference in my career? ‘Learning to write, communicate, and process information.’

Bill Tillson ’74

After 36 years in the television industry, I am forever grateful for the education I received at Keene State. As co-founder and Executive Chairman of Encompass Digital Media, a leader in worldwide video distribution, the communication skills I learned at Keene have been the most important resource in my business career. Encompass has facilities in Atlanta, New York, Stamford, Minneapolis, L.A., Singapore, London, and Buenos Aires. We originate over 850 24/7 television channels on a worldwide basis including 15 of the top 25 entertainment networks globally. We process and deliver over 25,000 hours of media daily (sports, news, digital media, etc.). When I am asked by one of our 1200 employees what made the biggest difference in my career, I reply: ‘Learning to write, communicate, and process information.’ I learned these disciplines at Keene State. It is great to see Keene State thriving.

Bill Tillson 1974, English


December 6, 2017 –

Students taking Dr. Katherine Tirabassi’s professional writing course worked in collaborative teams to develop various materials for local organizations. They worked with the Hannah Grimes Center, Cheshire Children’s Museum, Keene Senior Center, and Redfern Arts Center.

From blog posts and a social media protocol to website analysis and a draft…

August 1, 2017 –

The Keene State community is saddened to learn of the passing of Professor Emeritus of English Frederick J. Fosher, 84, who died at home in Surry on July 31, 2017, following a brief illness. He was a faculty member at Keene State College from 1967 until his retirement in 1992…

July 19, 2017 –

Written and spoken communication, creative thinking, critical analysis, hands-on internship experiences, the ability to imagine yourself in someone else’s shoes – the skills acquired in literature and writing classes are sought after by employers in all fields.

“Our Creative Writing Option/minor teaches imaginative thinking, communications skills, and excellence in writing,”…

June 15, 2017 –

Clai Lasher-Sommers ’12 came to Keene State as a non-traditional student to study English. Afterwards, she went off to establish New Dawn Farm in Westmoreland, N.H., a community-oriented, sustainable practice farm and CSA (community-supported agriculture). The farm is managed by women farmers dedicated to teaching the community – especially its…

May 19, 2017 –

If you’re an English/Writing major as a Keene State undergrad, you probably plan to do some serious writing someday. If you’re recent grad Tori Tucker ’17, you’ve already done plenty.

She wrote a novella, The Life and Times of Judith Fletcher, when she was living in Holloway Hall as a…

Contact the English Department

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English (Arts & Humanities)
Dr. Brinda Charry

Admissions Office
229 Main Street
Keene, New Hampshire 03435