Hannah Laudermilch

Major/Minor: English Teaching major, Creative Writing Minor

Estimated graduation date: April 2019

Tell us more about your experience with the Writing Center.

I absolutely love working at the Writing Center. It’s an awesome opportunity to talk to people from so many different majors and help them with their writing. It was initially terrifying to be in such a social environment, but I’ve come to love it. There’s something immensely satisfying about helping other people develop their ideas and use writing to create something.

What are your future plans/professional aspirations? 

I’d like to say that I plan on attending Oxford, writing fabulous best-sellers, and being the perfect teacher and mother, but since I know that’s not realistic, I’m happy with my less intense but still exciting prospects for the future. I plan on finishing my degree next April and jumping into teaching either middle school or high school, both of which I think would be fun. I aspire to help students realize the beauty of literature and writing. I want to keep writing academically and creatively and hopefully get published in a fancy journal or something equally cool. And though I’m positive I won’t be a perfect mother, I plan on having kids and encouraging their imaginations with lots and lots of books. Maybe those aren’t super professional aspirations, but it is my plan, and I’m excited for it.

What have been your favorite BYU experiences? 

My study abroad trip, hands down. I went on the British Literature and Landscape program this last spring, and it was incredible. We started up in Edinburgh, Scotland, and worked our way down England (and popped into Wales a couple of times). We hiked/walked about 200 miles in seven weeks. It was one of the hardest and best things I have ever done in my life. I got to see so much of England: cottages in the countryside, big cities, a university (Oxford!), castles, the ocean, mountains, Stonehenge, authors’ houses, and SO MUCH GREEN. The trip made the British authors we were studying come alive, and it gave me so much to write about. I learned a lot about England, my favorite authors, writing, and myself. Is it cheesy to call it a dream come true?

But even outside of the trip, I’ve had a great BYU experience. I love, love, love my major and minor. My classes have helped me move out of my comfort zone, expand my thinking, and do the things I love–for homework.

What advice would you offer to a newly declared English major? 

Just be open. You won’t love every piece you read or every class you take, but you can usually still find things within those pieces and classes to appreciate. My best papers have been about topics with which I was originally unfamiliar and about texts I honestly didn’t like–but I love those papers because I learned so much from writing them and came to appreciate things I initially wouldn’t have.

And if you are even considering studying abroad, do it.

Major/Minor: English Major, Rhetoric & Writing Minor

English+ Experience: Scottish Parliament Intern

Estimated graduation date: April 2018

Tell us more about your experience at the Scottish Parliament?  What did you like, dislike, etc?

Working in the Scottish Parliament for the SNP was an amazing experience. You are assigned to a Member of Scottish Parliament (MSP) and every one runs their office very differently. My MSP wanted me to primarily work on speeches and research and attend events with him. I wrote five speeches during my time there and researched extensively for a Member’s Bill.

What are your future plans/professional aspirations? 

I plan on studying for the LSAT this summer and taking it in the fall. My dream would be to go to the University of Texas at Austin for law school but I’ll have to see where I get in. I’m interested in medical and insurance law but open to other types of law.

What have you learned from your major? 

I think the Scottish Parliament was an excellent internship given my background in writing and my love for rhetoric. I was so grateful for all the research essays I wrote in my time here at BYU. A good speech is not so different from a rhetorical research paper. The greatest compliment my MSP gave me was that several people complimented the speeches I wrote. This led to him giving me more responsibilities and opportunities to write. It’s a great feeling being able to use your major in such a marketable way.

What advice would you offer to a newly declared English major? 

Do a study abroad or internship outside of the US or at the very least outside of Utah. I learned so much about the world and literature that I could never have had I stayed in my comfort zone. Don’t get down on your humanities degree- English majors have skills that many employers are looking for. Finally, don’t be afraid to get involved in other academic aspects like politics, women studies, science, engineering, etc. because the writing skills you have can be applied to many different types of jobs.