Follow Your Heart, Not Your Major

I’m a sociology major. Whenever I tell anyone that they ask me two things, 1) what is that? 2) what are you going to do with a sociology degree after you graduate? I especially heard the latter from my parents. But I thought the major seemed really interesting and perfectly fit my interests about people and how the societies we are a part of influence who we are and what we do. I’m surprised I picked my major as easily as I did because I tend to be a very indecisive person.

But there are plenty of people who think they know what they want to do, are so sure of it, and then completely have a change of heart. Others take classes in one major they thought they wanted to pursue and then realize that they are not passionate or interested in the material they are learning at all. A person’s major is not defining of their future career path or success. But it is important to pursue something during your time in college that you have an interest in because, if not, the classes and work that accompany it will feel like even more of a chore than it already is. 

Change can be a good thing

It is very easy to get set in our ways and just stick to what we are already doing, as it may seem like the easier option compared to change. But change doesn’t have to be this big, scary thing that steals away our comfort and stability. Change is the chance for new and exciting opportunities. Everything is just about the way you look at it.

Jessica Napoles, sophomore at the University of Florida, is about to make a pretty significant change in her life and go from being an accounting major to an interior design major. Jessica said she is excited for this new change in her life because she knows this a subject she is more passionate about and interested in.

When I asked Jessica, what made her realize that her major wasn’t for her and that she wanted to switch her major she said, “After taking three accounting classes on campus, I started to realize that I was truly struggling to keep up with the material and stay at the same level as my peers. I noticed that my classmates answered questions with ease, and these same questions tripped me up every single time. I, unfortunately, was losing motivation to try to work harder to improve my grade and I felt that it was because I was not in love with the major. And in all honesty, I did the cliché thing of imagining where I would be in my career in 10 years, and I all I saw was someone who was stressed, unfulfilled, and bored.”

You know yourself better than anyone else, and if you pay attention to how you’re truly feeling it’ll be easy to decipher between end-of-semester stress, lack of motivation and then true discontent. 

Everyone love options

We live in a country that loves variety and convenience, as proven by the amount of fast food restaurants we have. By not following the rigid schedule that we create for ourselves of what our lives are supposed to look like, we allow ourselves to take one or two classes we might not have even considered taking before. Switching majors gives one the opportunity to take a variety of classes.

Sophomore at the University of Florida Olivia Ward said, “I found that after taking two semesters worth of classes in my first major, physics, the parts I liked most all had a similar subject in common: math. This realization made me ultimately decide to change my focus because math is what I enjoyed more and could get easily excited about.”

By taking a variety of classes, Olivia got to see what she enjoyed the most and it allowed her to change her major to a subject she was passionate and interested about. I remember being nervous my freshman year to put down exploratory, as I thought that it meant that I didn’t have my life figured out. However, in college, your life isn’t supposed to be all figured out. I think we forget a lot of the time that college is meant to be a time of trial and error and of finding ourselves.

As long as you have passion and drive, you’ll go far

In reality, your major does not define what you’ll do in your future. While it’s important to try and pursue a major in college that interests you and would give you a good foundation for a future career, it’s not the defining factor of whether or not you’ll get your dream job. At the end of the day, it is one’s passion, determination, and drive that will open doors for them. College is already flying by and I’m glad I picked sociology as my major and not just political science, which I felt I had to since I want to go to law school.

Taking classes that interest you in college won’t make you magically feel less stressed, but you won’t mind the stress and work as much because the material you’re learning is actually a subject you care about. Don’t think that just because you wrote a major done on a sheet of paper your freshman year that it is written in stone and unchangeable. Go out there, take a bunch of different classes and pursue a major you care about. In the future, that attitude will shine through to employers and that means more than the name of any major on your degree.