Shawn Reagan graduated from Texas State in 2010 as an English major with a concentration in Creative Writing-Poetry. “People still ask, ‘why did you study poetry?’ and I feel like there was no better way for me to experience and understand the world than through that medium. I studied English because I couldn’t find anything more valuable, so I figured I better not waste my time studying something else.” A few of his favorite classes in college were The Meaning of Life in Filmwith Dr. Jeff Gordon, his study abroad program to Ireland with Steve and Nancy Wilson,Philosophy of Education with JoAnn Carson, and The Beat Generation with Steve Wilson.
While finishing up his undergraduate degree, Mr. Reagan applied for and received an offer from the Peace Corps to be sent to Malawi one year after his graduation date. During his two-year assignment, he taught English in a rural secondary school, organized and ran a national education camp for 80 students and 20 teachers, and taught at the national teacher’s college. After returning to the States, Mr. Reagan went to work as a trainer for the Posse Foundation, a national non-profit organization that aims to select, prepare, and support students with diverse backgrounds to graduate from college in a “posse” of ten. Mr. Reagan travels across the country to three universities to support students by facilitating discussions that promote cohesion, leadership, cross-cultural dialogue, and academic success.
While Mr. Reagan’s post-grad endeavors may not be typical for an English major, he states that the degree prepared him to be “an excellent communicator; an adept listener; and empathetic to cultures, people, and places” he had not yet heard of. “I’d probably tell students who were considering studying English that, if they think there’s something to be found, then they should seek it out and follow that trail. Don’t undervalue yourself.”
By Leeann Cardwell, International Studies major