Choose Your College Major Sooner Rather Than Later

Don’t get the wrong idea here. I’m not trying to rush you into anything. We are talking about a decision that could affect the rest of your life so don’t make a snap decision. I’m just advising you not to put off even thinking about this decision.

My Story

When I came to school I had an idea of what I wanted to do. I thought I wanted to be a journalism major then go to law school after I got my Bachelor’s degree. I’m still on that track. But I know plenty of people who came to school with no idea what they wanted to do — some, now juniors in college, still have no idea what they want to do.

The group without a major seem to be on a much rockier path than those who picked a major. Most of them spent the first two years of college thinking little about school and a lot of time partying or mindlessly playing Xbox for hours on end.

Now, they laugh off questions about their lack of direction, but I can always tell that they feel a twinge of nervousness every time the question is brought up, and they are quick to steer the conversation away from the topic.

I fear that most of these people will have to spend an extra year (or two) in college while their friends head off to the real world, medical school, graduate school, etc.

So when should you choose a college major?

I think that you should have settled on a major by the end of your first semester of sophomore year.

Here’s why:

You’ll be about done with your gen ed requirements at this time, which means that you’ll probably start taking blow-off classes if you don’t have a major because you won’t know what classes you have to take. When you’ve picked a major, you’ll have a whole new list of requirements to fulfill, and you’ll want to start chipping away at that list as soon as possible.

I declared my major at the end of freshman year. I had to apply for acceptance into my major, which is true of a lot of majors. The point I’m trying to make is: College is a process, and you need to actively remind yourself of that every semester. You can’t take a “break semester.” You have to be constantly thinking about what the next step is toward graduation.

Again, I’m not trying to rush you; I’m just trying to make sure you don’t fall behind.

Related Posts

The following two tabs change content below.
John Edwards

John Edwards

John Edwards is a senior at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he is pursuing a journalism degree. Currently studying abroad in Rome, he can usually be found hanging out and studying at his fraternity. He also enjoys running and spending time with family and friends.
John Edwards

Latest posts by John Edwards (see all)