Profile by Matthew Murphy (’16)
Riley Covaleski is a senior at Marywood University and is graduating with an English major along with Writing and History minors. Riley is the Senior Executive Editor for The Bayleaf, the Vice President of the English Club, and also a member of the Delta Epsilon Sigma Honor Society at Marywood.
English and General Focus in the Field:
When applying for colleges, Riley said that she did not want to apply as an undecided student. Her best subject in high school was English, so she decided that her best bet was to apply to Marywood with a major in English Secondary Education. Soon orientation came around and Riley talked to some students and faculty in the English Department. After talking to the faculty and students, she ultimately decided that dropping Education and going as a full-time English major was the best bet for her. Throughout her college years, Riley knew that one day she would like to become a novelist because her specialty was creative writing. Because of this, she picked up a Writing minor. She also added a History minor because she decided that she liked History, and she had enough credits to do so.
When taking her British Literature classes, Riley found that the Norton Anthologies, which were used in the class, were very helpful. When reading Riley sometimes forgets the time period of the story or book, so having the reminder and background of the time period is very helpful to her in class. John Green is also a big influence on Riley’s writing style. She loves the way that John Green writes, even though she has fallen out of love with his books. Also the Harry Potter book series are a big influence on Riley. She grew up with them and also enjoyed how it was one of the first series she read where the main characters actually grow up and mature throughout the story.
The Dream vs. The Reality
“If I could touch a star, the second star to the right if you catch my drift, it would be to write for Disney,” Riley Covaleski stated, talking about her dream job. She would like to write movie scripts for Disney. She came across this dream after taking a media scriptwriting class and started to realize how much she enjoyed writing a short film for the class. Riley would also like to write their television show scripts because they are kind of boring and she likes to think she can make them better.
Now in reality, Riley is currently interning at a library and really enjoys it. Because of this, she is thinking about the possibility of going to grad school for Library Science. She enjoys the field of editing and publishing, but does not want to live in a big city like New York. Riley wants to apply for an internship at Highlights Magazine because, after graduation she will have plenty of editing experience from her internship and working with The Bayleaf. She also has a blog, BookingAwesome, where she reviews books. She would like to make her blogging more than just a hobby after she graduates because she will have more time on her hands to do so. Riley would love it if publishing companies could send her books that she can review for her blog. She is also considering the possibility of working at a bookstore while writing a novel.
“When it comes to classes, take all of them.” She said it doesn’t matter what class it is, just take it and “if you don’t like it, it’s only three months.” Riley said that taking a lot of classes helped her further her love for English and a love for history along the way. Also, get an internship whenever you can and start early so you know you will actually get one. Finally the last advice Riley has for upcoming freshman and current students is, “Find stuff you like and go for it.”