Name: Christina Gil
College & Majors/Minors: English, no minor though I took lots of Spanish classes and studied abroad in Spain
Current Location: Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage, Rutledge MO
Current Form of Employment: Self employed
Where do you work and what is your current position?
I was a teacher for seventeen years but I recently left the classroom to follow a dream and move with my family to a rural ecovillage in Missouri. My current position is entrepreneur, I guess! I am selling products on Teachers Pay Teachers. I am also guest blogging for a few websites.
Tell us about how you found your first job, and how you found your current job (if different).
I found my first teaching job by searching the Sunday education section in the Boston globe. I got married August 14, and I started looking for jobs after we got back from our honeymoon. I ended up getting a last-minute job teaching Spanish which I did for a year before I (happily) switched to teaching English. I am currently self employed, trying to sell products on Teachers Pay Teachers. It’s lots of fun, but sometimes I miss that regular paycheck.
What was another writing-related job that was important in your career?
I worked as an intern at The New York Review of Books during college, and after college I worked at a paying job there for a year (so I guess that’s technically my first job out of college). It was in advertising, though, so I wasn’t doing much writing beyond emails to booksellers, and there was very little of that for me. (Mostly, my job involved moving boxes and data entry, also lots of stuffing of envelopes.)
What did you do in college to prepare for your post-grad life?
I learned how to write, read, and think for myself. Really, I have never taken an education class in my life, and yet I taught for a long time (and considered myself to be a pretty great teacher). I am a pretty firm believer that learning is about the skills so much more than the content—at least for English majors.
What is your advice for students and graduates with an English degree?
Just be glad that you didn't have to read as many history or philosophy texts (but you still got all those great ideas and historical context). Take challenging classes that get you reading difficult texts and writing lots and lots of hard papers. After that, other elements of your life will seem easy. Once you graduate, you’ll be able to write and read—which is actually a pretty rare skill.