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If you’re a high school senior, it’s natural to worry about college, especially if all of your friends have already chosen their preferred university and major. What if you have no idea what you want to study? There are many variables to consider when choosing a major. It’s a huge decision, and one you shouldn’t take lightly. After all, the one you choose will likely define your future career and which opportunities you’ll have as a professional.
How many times have you said or heard someone say “I don’t know what to major in”? Take some pressure off of yourself and take your time choosing a major. If you’re still undecided by next August, choose a generic major like the ones listed below. They’ll come in handy no matter which career you end up pursuing. Plus, you can easily segway into a different major after your freshman or sophomore year if you find one you enjoy more.
Whether you like to read, write or talk, communication can grow your skill set and broaden your horizons. If you pursue this major, you’ll likely study everything from social media to advertising and film. Ultimately, you’ll choose a career path based on your interests. Become an event planner, broadcast journalist, screenwriter, public relations specialist and more under the communication umbrella.
If English is your first language, consider making it your major. While you may be the brunt of a few jokes, English is more challenging than your friends and family might think. From studying the history of the written word to editing and proofreading long-form articles, there’s a wide variety of coursework within the major. Upon graduating, you could become a teacher, novelist, journalist, copy editor, or publicist, among other things.
3. Health Science
A degree in health science will likely interest those who want to work in the health care industry someday. Until you decide where you want to end up long-term, you’d be wise to pursue this major. Coursework will likely cover issues related to clinical practice, general administration and policies. Since the program is so general, it will provide a solid foundation for anyone looking to enter the industry, whether they’re interested in pharmaceuticals or social work.
Are you an extrovert looking to help others? A psychology major might be right up your alley. Classes will likely concentrate on psychological theory, philosophical concepts, sociology, interpersonal communications, and various other topics. Upon graduating, you could use your knowledge of the human brain to offer counseling, become a mental health technician, or even a behavioral intervention aide. Psychology careers are expected to grow 14% by 2028, and you have the option of working independently, for a medical institution or university, in social work, or in public education. Consider earning your master’s or doctoral degree to become a psychiatrist or earn a more prestigious title within the industry.
If you have even an inkling of interest in government policies, politics or finances, an economics major might be your gateway to a bright future among the big wigs in Washington, D.C. or Wall Street. This major will introduce you to social, political and commercial processes and teach you to think critically about them. Those who graduate with a bachelor’s in this major will likely become accountants, financial analysts, data scientists and other economic specialists or politicians.
Students who don’t know what they want to study often become business majors because they can use their degree for almost anything. Whether they turn into an entrepreneur, work in pre-law, or find a job in hospital administration, their knowledge will help them succeed. If you choose this major, prepare to study laws and regulations, finance systems, management structures and other parts of running or being part of a business. This is a great major to dive into if you’re undecided.
Do you have an affinity for Mother Nature? Look into getting a biology degree. This major will expose you to organism life cycles, conservation, ecosystems and more. As you learn more about the natural world, you may discover a passion for something you never knew existed. Explore these new interests as they may lead to a more specific area of study. Ultimately, your degree could help you to become a researcher, conservationist, biologist or take on a similar profession.
Similarly, a chemistry degree could put you on the right path to a career in scientific research. At the undergraduate level, you’ll have the chance to explore more specific areas of study like chemical and environmental engineering. Thus, this general program could help you narrow down your interests. However, if you stick with a chemistry major, you’ll still gain a wealth of knowledge and help you get a job as a lab technician, chemist, or even a forensic scientist.
Take Your Time
Most graduates agree that college is a good financial investment, one that will increase their chances of scoring a high-paying job down the road. However, 61% of them wish they had picked a different major. Had they done so, they may have spent additional money and time on their education. Yet, these individuals would have been willing to make the sacrifice in order to pursue their true passions.
As you begin your college career, keep your passions at the forefront of your mind. While one major may land you a better-paying job, it may be more worthwhile to choose one that will give you more job satisfaction. Take all the time you need to make a final decision and, in the meantime, choose a general area of study by picking one of the majors above.