If you’re in your last years of high school, or your first years of college, you’ve probably asked yourself: What college major is right for me?
I remember the days of feeling lost and overwhelmed by all of the options for college majors… it’s a big decision because (ideally) this decision will affect the ‘career’ you’ll have once you are finally done with the whole schooling thing.
So here’s how I came about making that decision — hopefully it can help you find the right path for yourself as well.
I personally had picked my college major by the time I graduated high school, because I’m a planner person and it would cause me great stress to not know what I’m doing in school… plus that way I was able to start taking my major classes my first semester of college.
But fret not — you probably won’t have to have your college major locked down until your sophomore year of college.
The key is to find something that you like doing, that is also one of your natural strengths.
I asked myself what are skills and/or subject areas that I’m strong in? What are classes I have taken that I have always felt were maybe easier than others? And for me, that was writing.
Writing was not only something that I enjoyed and had been doing in my free time for years, but it was also something that my teachers were consistently complimenting me on. I had always felt fairly confident in my writing skills, so when it came to picking a college major I chose one that was centered around it.
Once you have an idea of your interest + strength combination, research what majors you could utilize that in.
Although virtually every major is going to require some writing, my major (Journalism) is pretty much centered around it. However, there are many other majors that are just as heavily focused on writing as Journalism is… ie. English, Communications, Public Relations, Marketing, Creative Writing, etc.
I chose Journalism specifically because of my interest in pop culture and media — I wanted to not just write for the sake of writing, but write about things I liked. Journalism offered me that option (have you heard of Entertainment News anyone?). I think my first major paper I wrote in a Journalism class was an analysis on why the tv show ‘Cheers’ is truly “one of the classics” and I knew right then that I had picked the right major for me.
So it really comes down to you, and your personal preferences. Assuming that you will get a job in whatever you major in, what kind of job could you see yourself doing? I would encourage you to research all your possible options, and compare and contrast them to find the right major for you.
Don’t forget that you can change your major in college.
Just because you’ve decided on a major doesn’t mean that you’re stuck with it, or that you can’t change your mind. Most students will switch their major while in college, and it’s really not that big of a deal.
All the research in the world cannot make up for real life experience. Its likely that once you start taking classes for a specific major you will find that you really don’t like it after all. Don’t be afraid to switch to a different major if you hate the one you have.
I was originally a double major: Journalism and International Studies. However, I went to one International Studies class and quickly found that I did not want to be there. I promptly dropped that as my major and focused solely on Journalism.
Bonus Tip: Get to know your advisor.
Once you are in college you will likely be assigned an academic advisor, whether from your department or program, and I highly encourage you to utilize them. It is so much easier to drop that soul-sucking class when you have a good relationship with your advisor. My advisor’s name is Megan, and she is truly incredible and has been a tremendous help to me throughout my college experience.
Although your advisor might not be as awesome as mine is, they are there to help you. If you have questions ask them. If you’re still struggling to decide on what major is right for you — ask your advisor for help and advice. Chances are they have helped countless others just like you with the same thing.