Things I Learned in College: Majors (40-D Challenge, Day 17)

Majors. Field of interest. Your specialization.

Whatever you want to call it.

It’s the stuff that blows every first-year’s mind when entering higher education, driving one crazy late into the night: What the hell am I going to major in??? What in God’s name am I doing to do after college???

My remedy to all of this?

Chill. Out.

Really, what you choose to major in undergrad will most likely not be relevant to whatever you end up working for in the post-education world. For Heaven’s sake, there are English majors who work in the medical field, of all things!

A lot of people I know in school have switched their concentrations, some from within the sciences (i.e. biochemistry to biology) and others completely, from the sciences to the humanities and vice versa (i.e. biochemistry to English. Story of my life.).

And you know what? It is okay!

Cliché as it sounds, choose a specialization that you are interested in, something that you can see yourself doing for the next three to four years. To be realistic, everyone will be lost after they graduate, having no idea where they are going next in their young lives. Yes, even pre-med students may not have a solid idea of what they want to do, either. It’s actually really rare to find someone who has stuck with the exact same major for four years and continue straight on the path that they had planned since freshmen year of high school. Somewhere along the way, things won’t work out, and then you’re back to square one.

I’ve switched, and friends of mine have switched as well. Sometimes as much as three times before settling down! A friend who I got to know during our first year in Math class has gone from Biochem to Computer Science to Atmospheric and Ocean Sciences. That’s crazy! My roommate has done everything, from Mathematics to Economics to Linguistics- doubly insane! We’ve suffered, gone through everything from late-night stress to sickness to even tears, before we found what we wanted to do during our time in undergrad.

I admit, I had a rough time my first two years in college. As I had briefly mentioned, I started out on the Biochemistry path, taking a lot of science and math courses, aspiring to become either a pharmacist or physical therapist. Along the way, though, I discovered that I didn’t like it. Not to say that I hated the courses that I was taking, but rather I was just not interested- which seems worse in my opinion. Science just isn’t my thing- it doesn’t come natural to me, unlike writing.

During my second year, second term, I experience a minor breakdown that honestly, while not the most pleasant thing to undergo, nevertheless incited me to change. Completely. At that point, my grades weren’t that stellar, and my life was hell. That moment was my wake-up call to stand up and take control of my life. That was when I decided to switch to the English major.

While it has not always been smooth sailing in this new concentration of mine (I admit to many late-night hours pouring over analytical essays), I can say that I enjoy it much more. I feel healthier, physically and mentally. And since I was one of the first in my group of friends to switch, I’d like to consider myself an…inspiration(?) to them, for shortly after I changed majors, they followed suit.

So again, my advice to you, whoever you are, is to find something you like. Start by reflecting on your hobbies: what do you like to do? If you like writing poetry, try English. If you enjoy playing sports, consider physiological sciences. Heck, if you pass your time playing video games, study computer programming!

Basically, do what you want (or would like) to do. Strive to be happy.

– The Finicky Cynic


6 thoughts on “Things I Learned in College: Majors (40-D Challenge, Day 17)

      1. I want to go into editing/publishing of children’s literature, so I am looking into programs that help with that.

        In any case, the English major is broad; the options are endless after graduation.

  1. Pingback: Things I Learned in College: My Major – The Finicky Cynic

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