Careers and Graduate Success in English/Journalism

Many of our students become professional journalists and teachers, but others have forged their own paths to places like the White House or work in Alaska.

“Go down whatever road you choose.”
— Associate Professor Jeffrey Miller

Chad Wolbrink ’98, who is chief financial officer for the nonprofit Do Something in Brooklyn, N.Y., recalls, “Obviously my career took me down the finance and administrative path, but I believe that my major and whole liberal arts education helped shape me into the individual I am today, both personal and professional.”

Rebekah Bartelt ’06, who is now a Ph.D. candidate in microbiology at the University of Iowa, says, “Although my English major may not seem directly applicable to my pursuit of a microbiology Ph.D., I use the skills I gained in my English courses on a daily basis, and they have given me an edge in a competitive graduate program.”

Recent English alumni include:

  • Sonia Halbach '11, novelist (The Krampus Chronicle) and blogger, New York
  • Emily Schirmer '09, attorney, Belin McCormic, Des Moines, Iowa
  • Luke Tatge '09, copy writer for Epicosity Marketing and playwright, Sioux Falls 
  • Sara Gillis '09, instructor of English and communication, Southeast Technical Institute, Sioux Falls
  • Jason Van Engen ’07, English and journalism teacher, O’Gorman High School, Sioux Falls
  • Jess Winter ’07, literacy coordinator, Minnesota Reading Corps, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Amber Hallberg ’05, lead bookseller, Barnes and Noble, Irving, Texas
  • Jessica Iverson Trygstad ‘05, newsletter coordinator, Good Samaritan Society, Sioux Falls
  • Michael Goodwin ’04, law student, Hamline University, St. Paul, Minn.
  • Colleen Klingsmith Hillesheim ’04, sales and marketing coordinator, Twin Cities Business, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Ruth Aartun ‘03, radio producer and host, Townsquare Media, Sioux Falls
  • Maren Williams ‘03, reference librarian, University of Louisiana-Monroe, Monroe, La.
  • Sarah Manning ’02, chief strategy officer, Palmer Health, Kansas City, Mo.
  • Julie Kraft ’02, Ph.D. candidate in English, Indiana University, Bloomington
  • Heidi Tieszen Haag ’01, senior marketing coordinator, Bain and Co., San Francisco, Calif.

Recent journalism alumni include:

  • Naras Prameswari '17, international broadcaster, Voice of America, Washington, D.C.
  • Matthew Housiaux '16, White House correspondent, Kiplinger Letter, Washington, D.C.
  • Megan Raposa '15, Content Coach - Watchdog/Investigative Team, Argus Leader, Sioux Falls
  • September Symens '15, lead program coordinator, Project Extra Mile, Omaha, Nebraska
  • Jake Shama '14, reporter, Daily Herald, Mitchell, South Dakota
  • Megan Brandsrud '11, associate editor, The Lutheran, Chicago
  • Ashley White '10, digital content editor, Advocate, Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • BryAnn Becker ’08, reporter/feature writer, Argus Leader, Sioux Falls
  • Thor Tripp ’07, sports reporter/anchor, KOLN-TV, Lincoln, Nebraska
  • Eric Morken ’07, sports writer, Alexandria Echo Press, Alexandria, Minnesota
  • Kaeti Hinck ’07, interactive graphics editor, The Washington Post, Washington, D.C.
  • Erin Hevern ’07, reporter/photographer, Wahpeton Daily News, Wahpeton, N.D.; named Best First-Year Daily News Reporter by the North Dakota Press Association
  • Amil Anderson ’06, media relations, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE
  • Jon Murphy ‘06, legislative assistant for Sen. Mike Enzi, Washington, D.C.
  • Lacey Horkey Dixon ’06, director of media and industrial relations, American Coalition for Ethanol, Sioux Falls
  • Rebecca Rodgers Steele ’04, director of sales and marketing, Dakota Provisions, Huron, SD
  • Julie Malmberg ’03, researcher/writer/content development, Nike Sports, Beaverton, OR
  • Jane Jacobs '85, director of print and electronic publishing, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN