Changing your major, not your destiny

By: Juliyana Straley

With over 80 different majors to choose from, the process of picking one can be very overwhelming for students. Physical therapy, Public Relations, Pre-Vet, Education; how does one choose, and what if you don’t like that area of study? Considering switching to a new major can be exciting but stressful.
Director of Advising Glenn Miehls understands what each student is feeling when considering a new major.
“It is scary picking your major and not knowing what you want to do and that’s why people change their majors quite frequently. Probably 50-70% of college students change their major at least once. Most people will go ahead and change their major at least three times,” states Miehls.
Changing majors can also mean adding time to one’s college career. Switching to different departments could mean adding an extra semester, or two, or more. Senior Stephanie Radloff knows this situation all too well.
“I changed my major twice from Physical Therapy to Journalism then to Public Relations. I did my latest switch in my Junior year which meant I needed to take an extra year of classes. It isn’t ideal, but I’m studying something I love,” says Radloff.
Miehls also believes students should study something they enjoy learning about even if that means more time in college.
“If it is something that you are not enjoying, I suggest changing your major even if that means an extra semester or two,” Meihls says. “That is better than getting yourself pin held in a spot that you might not enjoy. The last thing we want you to do is put you in a major, you graduate, and you don’t enjoy doing it because that’s not going to be fun for you.”
Choosing a major does not have to directly correlate to a future career. According to Laverne.edu, more than 50% of college graduates pursue careers that have little to do with their major. Many employers just want you to have a degree, something Miehls personally related to.
“My main major was Mathematics education, so I was going to teach but then I started off in the Registrar’s office and Findlay. There may be some majors that may limit career options a little bit but there are certainly a lot of open doors out there with no limits.”
Looking at the list of majors and minors can be intimidating and making the decision to switch can be overwhelming for many students.
“At the end of the day, change your major if you are unhappy. You will be far more successful studying something you love, and you will have way more fun too!” says Radloff.

Sources:
Glenn Miehls, In person interview, recorded and transcribe, 8/25/17 at 10am.
Stephanie Radloff, phone interview, transcribed, 8/24/17 at 11am.
https://sites.laverne.edu/careers/what-can-i-do-with-my-major/

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