Ever since I could remember, adults have always said “make sure you know what you want major in once you go to college.” Their ominous warnings of wasted time, money, unfulfilled dreams, and the inability to change course still echo in my head.
For the longest time I thought I knew what I wanted to do, I took their warnings with a grain of salt, those warnings were for the people with no direction or goals. I had my professional life vaguely planned out: I would study finance, get a job at a brokerage firm, retire early and run a small Bed and Breakfast.
No brainer right? I mean, my dad and I talked stocks and bonds at the dinner table by the time I was in middle school, I excelled in my business courses in high school, I went to accounting camp (yeah, I’ll let that sink in…accounting camp). I was never particularly great at math, but put a dollar sign in front of those numbers and I got it.
Flash forward to college and well, things changed. I like my professors well enough, the class load was nothing I did not expect, but still, I spent hours on single assignments, subjects just didn’t click, I lost interest in my accounting and finance classes almost immediately. To put it to you straight, I felt like pricking my eyes with needles every time I saw a balance sheet. But, I am not a quitter and I prevailed, my grades suffered, my mental health suffered, but I was convinced that I was in too deep.
By my junior year, I was still fiddling with the decision to switch majors, but to what? During spring break I sat with my dad watching a movie about a brokerage firm, and although it was obviously fictitious, it was daunting. That day, I made the conscious decision to switch majors, I didn’t know to what yet. I started looking at internship opportunities and I was constantly drawn towards marketing internships.
While I didn’t have a marketing background, I had worked in retail for three years and I felt like that was foundation enough. I applied to a few marketing internships and was honest about my level of expertise (almost none). A month later I was hired on as a social media intern for a startup jewelry company based in Boston. I loved it: creating content, interacting with customers, watching trends; I was spending hours daily researching and learning new things to incorporate into our strategies. About a month into my internship, I emailed my advisor and let her know that I would be declaring marketing as my major in the coming fall.
So, here I am, I’ll be spending an additional year in college, but I love what I’m studying. I wake up every day and am happy to go to class. A lot of friends and family tried to convince me otherwise, but I have yet to regret switching majors, and I honestly, the extra year is worth it to me. Even if someone told me I would have to spend an additional three years to get my degree, I would still be okay with it because taking the reins of my own life and making a decision just for me and my happiness, is one of the most empowering things I have ever done in my life.
Moral of the story is: if you’re thinking about switching majors, don’t let anyone convince you otherwise, it might just be the best thing for you.