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All About the Individualized Studies Major (AKA The DIY Major)!

I like to think of the Individualized Studies Major (ISM) as a DIY Creation! In other words, you get to create your own major!

This includes choosing the title, the main topic/subjects, and the classes. Most importantly, you are choosing the major which will aid you most in your future career goals.

Pros of an ISM:

  • Choices!
    • You get to choose your own classes that make up your major! You can jump around from 100 level to 300 levels as long as they apply to the major! You also get to pick your advisor and obviously the title of the major.
  • Creativity!
    • You get the opportunity to be creative and integrative with multiple subjects and ideas. Your major name will be different than anyone else in the world. You’ll be unique and it can aid one in their future endeavors such as grad school or jobs.
  • Cool Projects!
    • You get to create a website and a capstone to show how your college classes have integrated into the ISM major! 
  • Self-Management!
    • You learn to manage yourself. You learn to hone your creativity, stay on top of work and be able to explain something to others that most people have never heard of!

My experience becoming an ISM Major:

As a personal example, I plan on being a Licensed Clinical Social Worker! I was a Childhood Education Major who thought about changing to Psychology. I wanted to integrate Psychology and Sociology but I didn’t have time to double major or actually change to Psychology alone as there are prerequisite requirements. Administration from Geneseo met with me to give me the option of potentially making a DIY Major AKA an Individualized Studies Major. This allows me to graduate on time and have an amazing experience creating something I never knew I could! My major is titled, “Child & Youth Studies: School, Family & Self.” I am currently developing a website and video to conclude and synthesize my ISM as I am graduating next month!

Overall, making the choice to have an Individualized Studies Major was the best decision I made at Geneseo and now I am excited to use what I have learned in Columbia’s School of Social Work program this Fall!

If you go to SUNY Geneseo or any school that offers ISM as a major option, feel free to reach out to me!

Dara Scolnick

Geneseo '22

Dara is a senior who has an individualized studies major titled, "Child & Youth Studies." She is a member of Alpha Phi Omega, where she follows a passion of hers, which is volunteering. She also enjoys writing and sharing her thoughts with other students which is why she joined Her Campus! She is the Co-Events Coordinator for Geneseo's HC as well!
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