Majors, we all have them, but that doesn’t necessarily mean we all took the same path in choosing them. Some people are in their majors because they are following in someone’s footsteps. They were encouraged to be something and they are doing it to make someone proud. Some people choose their majors because they don’t know what else they could be doing. They feel stuck and they just want to get out of school in four years. There are those who choose their major based on what they love, they are so passionate and I envy these people for always knowing what they have wanted to do. Then there is me and because I don’t like to make things easy for myself I chose a path that is completely different from anything I just listed.
I never really knew what I wanted to be. When I was little I would tell my parents I wanted to be a seal feeder at the zoo because they got to see the seals everyday and I thought that was the coolest thing in the world. Then I wanted to be an archaeologist because of a period I had where I strictly watched the History Channel when I got home from school. Then for a while while I was a rebellious teenager I decided I was going to be a counselor so I could help other teens who were “misunderstood” even though I was just going through everyday high school issues. I thought about counseling for a while and I realized it was a great path, just not quite the right path for me. My major search came to a standstill and I didn’t know what I was going to do.
When I was in my junior year of high school, and had just started looking at colleges, I was fortunate enough to be able to go on a mission trip to Tanzania. During my trip I saw miraculous things I never thought I would be able to see, and there were a few that were my favorite. I got to see a hospital and an orphanage and they really spoke to me. I realized I wanted to make people’s lives better and what a hospital does is just that. I had volunteered at Region’s Hospital in St. Paul and loved it, but I never really thought I could make that a career, and my trip showed me I could go into health care.
Originally, I thought I could be a nurse, and then I sat down to think about it and didn’t know if I could handle all the blood, guts, and late nights. Then as I was looking through different programs at different schools I found the health care management program at UMD. I loved UMD and it was my top choice school. When I looked up everything that the major was about I realized it was exactly what I wanted to do. So I applied, I got in, and started in the business school. I started working in the C&IS office where I took career assessments we offer and realized that I was also strongly suited for communication. I added it as a minor and honestly I could not be happier with my decision.
I know that was a lot to take in, and I just wanted to tell you my personal story to help you understand that it’s okay to not have a set plan sometimes. Following a set course isn’t always what happens and sometimes you have to learn from experience what your strengths are and where you want to go. I was confused about what I really wanted to do and now I love what I’m doing. I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t consider all my options in the first place. Keep an open mind and try new things or you’ll never know what else you could be doing.
Of Possible Interest:
- Turn Your Major Into a Career (our Pinterest board)
- Choosing a Major (all of our blog posts on this topic)