What am I going to major in?

So, you’ve made it to college and survived the first couple of years, but now they’re asking you to declare a major. Do you know what to choose? 

You’ve probably had advice from all sorts of people — parents, friends, professors, advisors — but what you think?  How do you choose?

Well, before you get too stressed out about it, let us give you some good news. 

Ethan's StoryFirst, the major you pick is not set in stone.  You can change it, and some students change their major multiple times.  Second, many, many people are in careers that have nothing to do with their major.

Check it out yourself.  Go somewhere off-campus where there are a variety of people around — maybe the mall.  Pick ten people at random and ask them what they do for a living.  Then ask them if they went to college and what they majored in.  Unless you’ve chosen a lot of doctors or college faculty members, you can bet that more than half aren’t directly using their major.

There’s a school of thought that says a good college education really consists of all the things you learn indirectly — how to think, how to communicate, how to look at things from different viewpoints, how to get along with a diverse group of people.

Still, it’s not a bad idea to pick your major wisely.  So how do you know what you should do?

Start by realizing that you’re complex.  You need to consider all aspects of yourself and look for a major that will fit all of you.

For example, would you rather work on a project of your own or on a group project?  Do you really come alive when a crisis hits?  Do you enjoy the process of implementing a plan and seeing it through to the end?  Does spending time with a lot of people energize you or drain you?  Are you motivated by working with your hands and by having something tangible to show for your work?

There are actually eight different factors that you should consider whenever you make college or career decisions.  It’s called the Whole Person Approach, and it’s the path to building a career that will fit you.   

Take a look at how the Whole Person Approach works, to see if there are aspects of yourself that you haven’t thought about, yet.  What else do you need to consider?  Are you confident that you’ve made the best decisions for you?  Go over it with some people whose opinions you value.  Then, if you’re still not sure what to do, contact us and we’ll talk about what we can do to help.