There is no more important decision once you know you want to go to college than what major you intend to study. This is the subject that will take you forward, and if you pick wisely, it will take you in exactly the direction you want to go in. Pick poorly, and you’ll find the career you end up with is not what you wanted after all. Worse, you might even discover that the major you choose doesn’t take you anywhere at all.
Therefore, the decision as to which major you are going to take is not one to rush through; you do need to consider the many different pros and cons of each idea and work out which one will be best for you. It might sound daunting, perhaps even overwhelming, but it’s something you’ll need to do, so it shouldn’t be put off. With that in mind, read on to find out how to get started and what sorts of things you’ll need to think about.
Find Your Passion
As we’ve said, there are many things to think about when choosing a major, and some of them will be covered in this article. However, there is one idea that stands out above the rest; what is your passion?
You can pick any major and take any path in life, but if you do something you don’t enjoy and are not at least interested in, if not passionate about, you’ll be miserable. You might even have to start all over again and pick a different major because you know you can’t move forward doing what you’re doing. Although this is possible (and shouldn’t be avoided if it has to be done), the fact is it will be expensive and time-consuming, delaying your entry into the working world.
Picking the right major from the start is clearly the better option, and picking one that you’re passionate about counts for a lot. Not only will you be able to enjoy the course program, but any careers linked to that degree will be things you’re more likely to enjoy and excel at. Therefore, once you’ve used the high school grade calculator to see what colleges you’re most likely to be accepted into, you can start delving into their programs and narrow your shortlist even further to ensure your passions can shine through.
What Else Do The Schools Offer?
It could be that you are passionate about something that is very popular, which means many different schools might offer it. This can make your choice harder because even if you know what major you want, picking the right school to go to can make it harder again. You might even decide to change your initial thoughts to make your decision easier.
In some cases, that will be the right thing to do – if something better catches your eye, for example. In others, it would be a mistake. This is why it’s worth considering what else the schools offer that will help to enhance your degree. Each school will do something different, and it’s worth considering these ‘extras’ to see what additional resources and help there might be for your learning.
If a school offers extracurricular activities that complement the course you want to take, and therefore would make your degree more worthwhile or useful, perhaps this is the right school – and the right major – to consider.
Think About Potential Salaries
Although money should not be the only consideration you have, there is no point in ignoring the fact that it is important in life, and that your salary will have an impact on how you are able to live and what you can do. Therefore, it makes sense to at least be aware of what the potential salaries are for jobs that require or can use the degree you choose. In that way, you’ll at least know in advance whether there is a lot of money or not so much in your future. This might not make a difference in whether or not you choose that degree and do the work, but it will help to prepare you for the money you’ll earn, and ensure you are practical when it comes to your ability to afford things in life.
You can find out the starting salaries for all kinds of different careers if you search online. Although these will often just be averages, it will help you to understand more. Some degrees will allow you to earn more than others, and if money is the driving force behind your decision, this will sway you in one or another direction. If money isn’t so important, make sure you choose your degree for the other reasons on this list.
Use Your First Year Wisely
Your first year in college will be a strange time. This might be the first time you’ve lived away from home, and that means it’s likely to be the first time you’ve had to work things out for yourself, budget, be organized, and so on. There will be a lot going on both physically and mentally, and you’ll also need to ensure you work hard.
Something else you’ll need to do in your first year is to think carefully about your future life and career goals and how you intend to get where you want to go. If you take a wide variety of classes during your first year, you’ll soon understand which direction you should go in, and by your second year, you’ll be a lot more focused and be more able to narrow down your options until you have a major you can be happy with.
Your first year of college will be a huge learning opportunity, and it won’t be easy, but if you try to remember that you are working towards your eventual career, this will help you take the time to think objectively about the classes you’re taking and understand which ones are going to help you the most. Remember to ask for help and advice if you need it because this could be the final step in realizing what will work best for you.