Picking a College Major

     Here at school there’s a lot of talk about majors. Why we picked them. Why we love them. Then, for some, why we hate our decision and want to do something else. Choosing a major is hard. For me, it took me years before I realized what I wanted to do. I’m also a massive planner, so when I hit High School I was already planning for college. The other thing about me was I didn’t want to accept the major that I’ve always wanted.

When I got to High School, I was told that it was preparation for College. For someone who is constantly thinking five years down the line, I was already thinking about what my major should be. The first thing I thought about going into was photography. Then I did some studying and realized that photographers don’t always get to take the photos they want, but instead photos they are commissioned for. I still loved it and do love it, but I wasn’t sure that I would love it as a major. I also did a bit of archeology, I would volunteer once a week organizing pottery pieces, and I have gone out on a dig. Again, while I enjoyed the work, I didn’t want to sit in a classroom for it, so I moved on. After that I tried, I couple other things that I figured would pay the bills but wasn’t something I would enjoy studying about.

During this entire time, I had one thing that I loved. Writing. Writing was the one thing that never left that I always wanted to do. If I didn’t write, I would come up with stories upon stories that would bother me until I decided to write them out. I started writing when I was 12, but I was afraid that it wouldn’t support me like I would need it too. I was afraid I would become the starving artist, settling for any job I could get because my degree couldn’t feed me. I specifically enjoy creative writing. Which makes those fears worse. The field of novel writing is highly competitive. Everyone thinks they are going to be the next New York Times Best Seller. I have that dream. Everyone in my major has that dream too. And the truth is, only some of us will get there. Whether that takes perseverance or wickedly amazing talent, I don’t know. I just know some of us might give up somewhere along the way and I hope that won’t be me.

These fears are what ran me away from becoming an English major for a long time. Even after I had decided I would go for it, I still hesitated to go for the job I want.  Instead, I thought about going for other things that would require a bachelors but that I felt would guarantee a living. However, I didn’t have the whole story until I got deep enough into the major to see the jobs that were out there. Through networking, talking to teachers and personal online research I found out about many creative jobs that required an English degree. Do I still want to publish a novel? Absolutely. But in the meantime, I’m going to find another job that I will love to support me.

I feel that when choosing a major, it is important to pick something you love. That way when the classes get hard, you are able to push through it and get to where you want to be. It’s easy to get discouraged in a major. For me, when that moment came, because I’m passionate about writing I didn’t care that I was discouraged. I wanted what I wanted, and I was going to get it. And this hasn’t happened with just me. It’s happened with my roommates, with other people I talk to on campus. The thing that keeps them going is their love for the material and their dreams. If you are passionate about something, go for it. Everything will work out.


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