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Profile - Kocian

Sarah Kocian '09
Austin, Texas

When asked why she thinks people should study literature, senior English major Sarah Kocian has an impassioned and emphatic response. "It's not why they should," she says. "They should be required to study literature!" Although admittedly she has some bias in favor of her major, Sarah is quick to explain her rationale. "Reading and responding to literature makes you think critically," she says. "You get that in other departments, too," she admits, "but I think English is applicable not only to your conversations you have with your friends and the way you interpret things, but even in other classes that might not pertain to the subject."

And Sarah knows firsthand how applicable her English degree is to fields outside the study of literature. "For the past year I've been dead-set on going to law school," she explains. I'm starting the process of applying to law school and hopefully I will enroll in my top choice." In addition to her law school aspirations, Sarah also has an inkling she'll be back in English classes sometime in the future. "Always in the back of my mind I'm thinking, should I go get my MA in English? I'm weighing my options right now. I can always go to law school and go back and get my MA, or vice versa."

One of Sarah's favorite things about her course of study at Baylor is not only how much she's learned through her courses, but how much more knowledge there is to acquire. "When I got to Baylor, I thought I knew everything. But then when I started getting into my courses I realized how much I didn't know and how much I needed to know. Which is kind of a crazy thing, because once you get to a 4000-level lit class and you've read all these books and written all these papers, you feel accomplished, but you realize there is still much more to learn!" But for Sarah, that realization is far from discouraging. "It makes school great!" she says. "It's such a good feeling, because it makes me feel like I'm getting a lot out of what I'm studying."

Sarah's choice of favorite English class at Baylor reflects her desire to work hard at learning, as well as her belief that what she learns in her English classes is applicable in other areas as well. "Although I've loved all my classes and my professors, the class where I've gotten so much out of the literature and that has really made me critically think about the reality we live in has got to be the Postmodern lit class. We don't just read literature in that class-we read criticism, we look at art and read philosophy and look at movies and analyze them as texts." Needless to say, Sarah knows she'll continue to learn and think critically well beyond graduation, law school, and whatever else follows.