Now, although it’s been about a year and a half since I had graduated from college, there are still moments when I still think back to it with fond memories. From the comforts of the dorm life to joining clubs and making friends to having the freedom to choose my field of study, there are definitely tons of conveniences which, to be frank, are those that I sorely miss now. Being a working adult, that is.
That said, I remember taking many classes during my four years in college, and although I enjoyed them for the most part, there are those which I wish that I had the opportunity to take. True, it’s good that I got to choose my major, minor(s), and everything, but I’ve found the required courses a bit too restrictive on my passions, especially having heard of and taken courses outside of my major as electives (i.e. supplement courses for graduation). I’ve taken classes outside of my English literature/French/Society and Genetics requirements and absolutely loved them; if I weren’t any of those majors or minors, I would have loved to delve deeper into those fields of study.
That said, I’m listing a few of the major fields that I would’ve loved to have taken back in college. Some of them are those which I’ve taken a class or two while others I hadn’t but would’ve liked to do. It’s just my way of reflecting on the possibilities of learning, and perhaps I’ll choose to return to them someday.
Without further ado, here they are!
Classes I Wish I Had Taken in College
1. Asian American Studies. During the Fall term my second year, I took an introductory course to Asian American Studies, or “Asian Am” for short. In that class, I read tons of literature from those of Bulosan, Lahiri, and Yamamoto, and fell in love with them. The themes of isolation, belonging, and diaspora that I read about touched me deeply, as a first-generation Asian American grappling with such problems. I would’ve loved to continue studying Asian-Am Studies if I had the choice, and I even had thoughts about minoring in it. From that one course, it sparked a passion in me to pursue Asian-Am culture long after the class ended and after graduation; it made me a proponent for racial causes in the Asian-American community, as well as made me embrace that identity even more.
2. LGBTQ Studies. Just like with Asian-Am, I only took one LGBTQ studies course back in college, during the spring term that same year. It was actually my first upper-division course ever, and among the older, more learned students, I was definitely intimidated by the class with its super theoretical readings on sexual identity: reading works from philosophers like Foucault and Butler were challenging to say the least, and I admit, I was lost. But slowly over time, I got accustomed to the vigor of the course, and in the end started to enjoy it all. In a way, that course also helped me come to terms with my sexuality, which back then had been really uncertain. While queer theory still remains tough for me, I would choose to delve back into it if I could!
3. Sociology. Also incredibly theoretical, Sociology is, well, the study of society and how it affects aspects of other fields, including science, politics, economics, technology, and so forth. I took two courses on it during my undergraduate years, and while challenging, nevertheless gave me a lot to think about concerning the relations of everything around us. One of my courses dealt with food and society (e.g. how things are marketed and processed to the public and how that affects health and understanding of food) and the other on technology and society. It would’ve been interesting to have taken a course on sociology in other interdisciplinary fields; in fact, taking more similar courses would’ve been beneficial to my assessment on the sci-fi/technology show Black Mirror, which is one of my current obsessions (reviewed it here)!
4. Food Studies. This was actually a new field of study back when I was in college, not appearing until sometime during my final year of school. However, I’d taken other courses concerning food politics (including that of the Sociology one), and had interest in learning more about how food (from processing to marketing to consuming) is so influential on our lives, not just health-wise, but also psychologically. While I probably wouldn’t have been able to keep up with the science aspects of it (e.g. chemical components around certain proteins, carbohydrates, and fats), learning about their societal effects would’ve been very interesting. Besides, I’m a foodie at heart, so this field of study would’ve been perfect for me!
5. Music History. If it weren’t for spending that one summer between my second and third years taking summer courses, I would’ve have been able to get into the EDM scene, since the one and only Music History course I’ve taken was on the history of EDM, which to this day remains one of the coolest courses I’d ever taken in college. From its humble roots in jazz, soul, and rumba to the current subcategories of trap, ambient, and dubstep today, EDM has certainly come a long way. If it weren’t for the fact that my professor was a young DJ himself (so dope!), I wouldn’t have been introduced to music from Dillon Francis, Diplo, and Burial, all of which to this day I still listen to and greatly respect. Being from the Los Angeles music scene helps foster that EDM vibe as well, in a way. 🙂
…and that’s about it for my list of college courses I wish that I’d taken! What are some fields of study that you’re passionate about, even if you’ve never taken them before? I’d be curious to find out!
— The Finicky Cynic
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