What Should I Go to College For?

Ginger Abbot

Jun 27, 2022
cover major

We are a reader-supported education publication. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission to help us keep providing content.

As you enter into the next chapter of your life, there are many decisions ahead. One of them is choosing your college major. With so many options, you may wonder, what should I go to college for? Here are some tips to help you find the perfect career path for you. 

1. Explore Your Passions

To help you choose a major, consider topics and activities that interest you. Write down a list of things you love to do. Then see if you can connect these to a particular field of study. Suppose you like drawing and technology. A graphic design major could be the perfect fit. Also, consider what skills you would want to learn or improve on, such as communication. 

The major you choose will also have an impact on your college experience. You might end up joining clubs related to your area of study and forming close friendships. 


2. Determine Your Strengths and Weaknesses

Figuring out your skills can help answer the question, what should I go to college for? Passion is important, but you also want to play up your strengths. If you are an excellent public speaker, consider careers in front of the camera, like a news anchor. 

On the other hand, it’s essential to know your weaknesses. If you are more of an introvert, consider a less interactive job, such as computer coding. However, you can also improve upon your weaker areas by taking classes. 

3. Get Career Advice

Talking with professionals in the field can help you to learn more about your major. It can also provide you with personal experiences you can’t find online. One way to find these professionals is to attend job fairs at your school or in your area. You can also try reaching out to your school’s alumni network or family connections. 

In addition, when considering what I should go to college for, talk with your professors. If there is one who worked in your field, reach out to them. You can ask them which courses they recommend and see if they have any resources. They may even have connections for you. 

4. Understand the Degree Requirements 

For a lot of jobs, a Bachelor’s degree may be enough. However, other career fields require more education. For example, if you want to become a teacher, you will need to obtain a master’s degree. Before choosing a major, figure out how much training you will need to pursue your career. 

5. Consider STEM Careers 

STEM is one of the top-paying majors, along with business. You can earn an average of $65,000 per year throughout your career. Keep in mind this field requires excellent math and problem-solving skills. Yet, if you are interested in technology and how things work, it could be a perfect fit for you. 

6. Purse a Useful Minor 

Choosing a minor can help you build valuable skills. Yet, it must pair well with your major. Choose one that provides applicable traits for your major but isn’t too similar. Suppose you pursue a science degree. Then a statistics minor enhances your ability to analyze large data sets. 

Also, ensure the minor still gives you time to complete any internships. Consider waiting to declare your minor until sophomore year. Then you will know if your degree requires any specializations. 

7. Look Into Possible Salaries 

Before choosing a major, research the average salary. It can help you budget for future expenses, like student loans. You also want to ensure you can support your lifestyle. If you eat out often, you may want to look for a job making more money. The average salary for college graduates is $50,000. 

To figure out payment for your major, use the following online resources:

  • Salary.com
  • Glassdoor
  • Payscale
  • Indeed
  • SalaryList

8. Money Isn’t Everything

Remember, you want to consider other factors besides money, such as the industry. You can use the skills you learned in your major to go into a different field of study. For example, a business degree can be helpful in many areas, such as human resources and marketing. 

Another thing to look into is the growth of the industry. Manufacturing, construction, and pharmacies are fast-growing markets. In fact, the number of warehouse jobs listed on Indeed was 57% above pre-pandemic levels. 

9. Think About Your Career Goals

When deciding what I should go to college for, examine your career goals. Consider what type of environment you want to work in. Do you prefer an office space or do you enjoy working outdoors? 

Also, consider how much schooling you want to do. Do you want to stop at the bachelor’s level or continue your education and pursue a master’s? Be sure you know the level of education required before selecting your major. 

10. Have a Backup Plan 

Consider coming up with a few backup options in case you switch your major. It will make the process less stressful, allowing you to focus on your studies. Keep in mind it’s okay to change your mind as your interests grow. Just try to make the change as early on as possible to prevent extending your graduation date. 

Here are some of the most valuable majors to consider:

  • Architectural engineering
  • Construction
  • Computer science
  • Aerospace engineering
  • Transporation Sciences 

How to Know What Should I Go to College For?

Picking your major is an exciting part of the college experience! You may have started asking family members what I should go to college for? Follow these tips to help narrow down your choices. 


Written By