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English Studies - Professional and Creative Writing

A professional and creative writing degree from La Roche University prepares you for careers in public relations, corporate communications and publications, advertising, web-based and social media writing, journalism and technical writing.

It’s no secret that you need to obtain an edge before you graduate from college.

You need to acquire practical experience. You need to immerse yourself in a challenging and rewarding academic program. You need opportunities to succeed. And you need to work closely with faculty dedicated to their craft and committed to your success.

You’ll find all of that and more at La Roche University. Our Professional and Creative Writing Program is specially crafted to prepare you for life after college.

Career-Focused Curriculum

La Roche’s program represents a unique and highly competitive opportunity, especially when you compare it to other writing programs offered by similar schools in Western Pennsylvania. Professional and Creative Writing students receive training in key areas, including:

  • Journalism
  • Creative nonfiction
  • Business communication
  • Technical writing
  • Writing for nonprofits
  • Creative writing
  • Writing for broadcast and social media
  • Writing for advertising
  • Sports writing
  • Poetry and fiction writing

The program also exposes you to digital photography and publication design – two skills that, in concert with writing abilities, help to develop a well-rounded and marketable graduate.

As a student in our program, you will also participate in the professional portfolio process, wherein you will produce a portfolio to showcase your work to prospective employers and/or graduate schools.

And since we understand the importance of internships in the job market, the English Department faculty will help you find the perfect internship to complement your preferred career direction. 

Opportunity to Double Major

The Professional and Creative Writing program is strategically crafted to allow you to double-major in literature without adding any additional credits or time. Earning a double major in professional and creative writing and literature ensures that you’ll be even more career-ready for today’s competitive job market. It also prepares students for various graduate degrees including education, human resources management, leadership, English, media communications, and law.

Expert Faculty

The La Roche English faculty includes scholars, researchers, business professionals, award-winning poets and authors, and professors who hold years of experience in journalism, writing, education and media. These professors offer a wealth of real-world experience and share their expertise for you to understand classroom material at a much deeper level.

Publishing Opportunities

La Roche is a small campus with big opportunities for English students and aspiring writers. You’ll have the opportunity to serve as a contributing writer, editor, designer or photographer for Redhawk Post, our online student newspaper, and Nuances, the University’s literary journal.

Honor Society

English students who maintain an above-average GPA and demonstrate a commitment to a career in English or literature may join our chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the English honor society. Sigma members assist the English Department in publishing its annual literary magazine, Nuances. This group also sponsors on-campus events such as poetry readings.

Study Abroad Opportunities

You have the opportunity to expand your horizons by studying literature, language and culture in another part of the world. Included as part of your La Roche experience, our Study Abroad+Study USA program offers you the chance to travel abroad or within the United States at little or no additional cost. Under the supervision of English Department faculty, our students have taken trips to England, Ireland, Scotland and Italy.


In addition to LaRoche's merit-based scholarships, we offer annual and endowed scholarships, thanks to our generous donors.

Tem Tipton Memorial Endowed Scholarship

The scholarship was established in memory of Tem Tipton by her family in tribute to her professional achievements as a reference librarian and teacher and in recognition of her community service activities.

  • Open to currently enrolled full-time, undergraduate students pursuing a degree in education or English who have completed their freshman year
  • Applicants must have financial need, a cumulative GPA of 3.0, and have current or past involvement with community service or other types of volunteer activities
  • Recipient must remain in good standing during award term
  • Essay and two recommendation letters required
  • Renewable award

    Apply Online   

    In addition, each year the English Department chooses recipients for the following awards.

    Dorothy and John Saladiak Award

    This $1,000 award is given to a graduating English senior who shows the most promise.

    Sister Rita Yeasted Scholarship

    La Roche alumna Jill L. Ferguson established this scholarship to honor English Department Chair Sister Rita Yeasted, Ph.D., and her contributions to the field of English education. Scholarship recipients must be current La Roche students who are communications or English majors with a minimum 3.5 GPA. 

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