Summers at CSM – One Student’s Hamlet Interpretation in English Lit is Icing on the Cake

CSM student Brittany Higgs, of Mechanicsville, had all the right ingredients to ace her grade in ENG-2010 English Literature over the summer when she served up her creative presentation on Hamlet.

A student enrolled in the English Composition and Literature summer class at the College of Southern Maryland’s (CSM) Leonardtown Campus took her creativity to the next level when she was studying Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Brittany Higgs, 28, of Mechanicsville, baked a cake and highlighted the better-known characters of Hamlet – with icing. 

Traditionally, CSM English Instructors Norm Bleakley and Barbara Link ask students to go beyond by taking acts and scenes from Hamlet and make YouTube videos with the students reading in old and modern English. 

“We require the students to present acts and scenes from Shakespeare’s Hamlet in any way they want but typically, they have an opening presentation, poster, PowerPoint …etc,” shared Bleakley. “We were all pretty impressed by Brittany’s drive to take her interpretation of Hamlet to the next level,”

“I thoroughly enjoyed this class,” said Higgs, who is pursuing her associate degree in social science. “The way that instructors gave us the freedom to express ourselves and show them creatively how we were learning was a lot of fun.”

In ENG-1020 English Literature I, students survey the development of English Literature from its beginnings to 1798 by reading poems, letters, works of fiction and non-fiction, and plays from the literary period within this time. Students learn about and use critical literary theory to discuss and write essays about literature, and if they want, the can even put their baking skills to work.

Whether you want to explore literature, or learn to weld, there is still time to register for fall classes at CSM. When you’re ready to take the next step in your education, visit CSM online at