When it comes to deciding a college major, many students fear that they could potentially end up making the wrong decision. A student’s “perfect” major ultimately depends on their current situation. Some factors in this decision making process could be a history of a specific profession within one’s family, or simply what your interests are in your own personal lives. The pressure selecting a major that involves all three can be stressful. Luckily, you don’t have to pick the perfect major right away. Once you decide, you are free to change it down the road if you discover that your first choice is no longer a career that you would like to indulge in.
Melissa Martinez is a licensed aesthetician who studied law before deciding to begin studying health and skincare.
“At first I thought law was the right choice for me. It wasn’t until the second semester that I just decided it wasn’t what I wanted to do”, said Martinez. “Of course I was annoyed with myself because it felt like I was giving up, but I don’t regret my decision at all because I love my job. It doesn’t feel like work because I’m doing something I love.”
About 80 percent of students in the United States end up changing their major at least once, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. In other words, switching majors isn’t the end of the world.
Ricardo Santana is a student at Laguardia cc currently pursuing a degree in EMT studies, and hoping to become a paramedic one day.
“I initially wanted to be a paramedic and I still do, but I always wanted to be a stylist. It just didn’t seem realistic at the time so I just went with what I felt would be easier,” said Santana.
Luckily, not all career paths require a degree. Fortunately for him, he has the option to continue his studies as well as dabbling in fashion in his free time.
“Since the shutdown I’ve been helping my coworker out, trying to put him in outfits I feel would match his style,” said Santana. “It’s nothing big but I know the right people could possibly end up giving me the opportunity to do something bigger later on.”
The idea that a student is “quitting” may stop them from making that decision to switch, when in reality that is not the case at all. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, college students change their major at least three times over the course of their college career. That statistic says a lot about how common major switching is as a college student. If you are struggling with, or simply not enjoying the major you selected as a senior in high school, why continue to pursue a degree in a field that would make you unhappy in the long run?
Senior Melanie Ortiz from Lincoln High School planned to study nursing since the beginning of her senior year.
“When I first started applying for colleges, I swore I was going to be a nurse. But since the coronavirus outbreak, I started to feel like it wasn’t a field I still wanted to pursue. I’m not sure how I would be able to handle the pressure of being a nurse, especially if something like this were to happen again in the future. So for now, I’m undecided,” said Ortiz.
Choosing the right major may seem like the biggest idea of your life, but there is always that option to go down a different lane even if it isn’t what you might have planned. After all, you are the one paying tuition, so who says you can’t change your mind down the road?