Article written by GSU staff writer Jessica Louis
When attending college in the heart of Atlanta, one of the fastest growing cities in the United States, with career opportunities pouring in by the hundreds of thousands, it may be very easy to drown in the overwhelming career paths offered at Georgia State University. If you are still insecure about what major fits best for you, fear not because you are not alone!
About 77% of the nation’s freshmen and sophomores are still undeclared. But at Georgia State, the student is required to declare a major by the end of their second semester. And even then, the average student switches their major about three times before graduation. The only setback to choosing a major late in your college career is that it may prevent you from graduating within the standard four years.
However, it is more important that you are secure in your choice of studies as you will most likely use that degree to carry you throughout your adult life.
So how do I know what major is right for me and how do I make a solid choice in a timely manner?
First, it is extremely important that the major is considered mainly by the student and not their parents. A lot of times, students come into college carrying their parent’s expectations and wind up unhappy, failing, or both.
Shannon Reed, writer for the Washington Post and English professor, said, “If the student will attend a four-year college, though, parents need to accept that part of the point of being there is to explore new interests and ideas, which might lead their child to a better understanding of who they are, what they’re good at and, yes, what work they might want to do.”
Undecided freshman students should also spend their first semester participating with different organizations of interest on campus so that they get a feel for what the like to do, what they’re good at, and what they don’t mind making a lasting career out of. This is an exciting time to get to know yourself as an independent adult and search for your passion or purpose in life.
Upperclassmen who are insecure about the paths they choose to take should also explore various organizations and interests. This may seem increasingly overwhelming as their graduation date seems to be farther than expected. It is important to remember that everyone achieves personal success at their own rate and the pace of others should not be a concern. But if time, for you, is of the essence, try to find a major closest to your current interests as 50% of college graduates find careers unrelated to their major anyway.
Whatever the case may be, it usually works out in the long run, so don’t waste your time at one of the largest universities in the nation with the ideal location sitting around waiting for inspiration to find you. There are over 400 student organizations, 250-degree programs, and well over 50,000 students at Georgia State University. Go get up and find your niche, Panther!