English majors work on the Sierra Nevada Review and on the Eagle's Eye for SNU Tahoe
Creative communication
critical thinking
and cultural context
for modern times.

English and Creative Writing

Bachelor of Arts in English
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing

“We think because we have words, not the other way around.”

– Madeleine L’Engle

Be inspired by SNU Tahoe’s rich literary environment. The Writers in the Woods series brings renowned authors to campus monthly for intimate readings and workshops which are open to everyone, and each year brings a new full-time Distinguished Visiting Writer to teach and mentor students of all levels. The Poetry Center houses a comprehensive collection of American poetry, with a special focus on contemporary work.

A few of the many authors who have visited include Isabel Allende, Juan Felipe Herrera, Lola Haskins, Patricia Smith, Nick Flynn, Jane Hirschfeld, Tim O’Brien, Ellen Hopkins, Brian Turner, Luis Alberto Urrea, Saeed Jones, Gayle Brandeis, and Tobias Woolf.

Challenge your creativity in poetry slams, literary readings, the Associated Writing Programs Annual Conference, student writing groups, and journalism field trips. Report and write for The Eagle’s Eye, the college newspaper published both in print and online, or intern at the Tahoe regional newspaper. Edit for SNU Tahoe’s nationally distributed literary journal the Sierra Nevada Review, a recipient of both NEA and Nevada Arts Council awards. Tutor at the Boys and Girls club, or work with local businesses and non-profits on their marketing and communications initiatives.

Prepare for your career with coursework geared toward journalism, marketing, creative writing, publishing, teaching, freelance writing, literature, or public relations; advanced studies in English; or related fields such as law. SNU English graduates have gone on to publish poetry collections, travel guides, novels, and investigative journalism; teach in high schools and direct tutoring programs; and work in marketing and technology.

Recent graduates have continued on to graduate programs at Duquesne University, Kingston University in London, University of Essex in England, Chapman University, and University of Notre Dame. The list of publications from our students and graduates grows every semester.

“Next year’s words await another voice.”

― T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets

BFA in Creative Writing

Writing is a way of defining our humanity. There are no shortcuts to becoming a skilled, thoughtful creative writer – the path to success is to write, and write some more. There are no bystanders in this program – you will be actively engaged in your writing practice from day one!

You will explore how to write with clarity, power, and nuance. In small classes, workshops, critiques, and discussions you will develop core competencies across genres, and refine your individual writing style and voice. For your senior thesis, you will assemble a book-length collection of original work of publishable quality in your chosen genre, accompanied by a portfolio of experiential field work.

The English Scholar Program

Fast-track your preparation for a professional future in your chosen English specialty. Co-author with a faculty member, intern with a local publisher or school, and be a teaching assistant in an SNU English course. Take full advantage of our creative opportunities under the guidance of a dedicated faculty mentor.

The English Scholar Program is limited to five incoming freshman each year. Apply early for priority consideration!

Meet Our Students >

English major Ryan Donoghue takes a hike during the fall around Lake Tahoe

Ryan Donoghue

Major: English

Class of 2016

During my time spend away from academia, I developed an insatiable appetite for literature and realized that our orientation to the world depends on the language we use to define it; studying literature fosters that growing and knowing. . . . Read More

Bryce Bullins, who received his Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing poses for a picture

Bryce Bullins

Major: English, Music

Class of 2014

My undergraduate professors drove me to be a better student and a better person, but they also gave me the space and the encouragement to find my own way. I gained confidence and validation as an artist and a critical thinker. When I decided to pursue poetry at a more serious level, the stellar faculty and low residency model of SNC's MFA in Creative Writing program made it an easy decision. . . . Read More

Ask A Question

June Sylvester Saraceno
English Program Chair
775-831-1314 x7514

See the GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS > page for specific major course requirements.