Do you need an English degree?

It was announced this week that publishing company Penguin Random House have deducted the degree requirement for jobs. The move is in the hope that the company will have ‘more varied’ applicants. And is to give “every applicant the opportunity to demonstrate their potential, creativity, strengths and ideas, regardless of their background.” (Via the Huffington Post)

As an English student, I feel the anxiety surrounding the move. The unavoidable question ‘what are you going to do with that degree?’ Can no longer be answered by ‘work in publishing’ without being followed by ‘you don’t need a degree at Penguin.’ So are we all wasting our time? Or is taking a degree an act of incomparable skill-gaining? Are said ‘skills’ enough? Do we need to force ourselves out ‘there’ more? Should we be attempting to get our foot in the door early rather than rely on our qualifications?

Penguin certainly seem to think so. I think I’ll follow suit.


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