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The struggles of finding the right major

Even though your college major may be different from what your career will be, choosing the right one is still a source of stress for many people, including me. 

Since my start at Mills College, I’ve changed my major and minor multiple times. I initially started my time at Mills as a biology major with the goal of becoming a gynecologist. However, I then realized that I really disliked molecular and cellular biology, and it doesn’t help that the biology major and the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) requires taking a lot of those classes. I then decided on environmental studies because of my passion for sustainability and environmental policy, along with my hatred of chemistry. 

Within the last two years, I have switched between Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees in environmental science multiple times mainly because I was afraid of physics. I have even changed my minor three times officially, finally deciding on a double-minor in mathematics and journalism. I have even considered majoring in math because I hated organic chemistry so much. My advisor, Dr. Faul, has said that she has signed more M Center papers for me than for anyone else. I can’t help that I am indecisive; I just have multiple interests, and it’s extremely hard to find a major and minor that caters to them. 

It’s such a high expectation to expect us to figure out what we want to do at such a young age when we are still figuring out who we are. Therefore, it’s okay to not know immediately what you want to major in. In fact, maybe taking a few semesters to decide what you actually want to do is a good idea.   

Your college major shouldn’t have to completely define the type of person you are. One (or even two) college major(s) can’t possibly contain the many facets of your personality and interests. Besides, in many cases you’ll probably get a job outside your major. 

If I could go back to my first year at Mills, I would have been a math major minoring in both economics and journalism, working towards a career in business. I realized that I really like numbers and I really miss taking math classes. It gave me structure in my life and motivated me to do my homework on time each night. This semester is the first time in my life I have gone without a math class. Although it is relaxing, it leaves a gap in my life. I am taking physics this semester, which I am not scared of anymore, thankfully; there is some math in it but the concepts still overwhelm me. I may even re-declare math again as my minor since I miss it so much.

No matter what you end up choosing as your major — even if people say your major is useless, in which I have gotten sometimes — whatever. Jobs are competitive for almost every major and most don’t get a job immediately after college so in the end it is up to you and what you like. You might as well work hard in what you love rather than slave away at a job you loathe. It will pay off, eventually.