Top 5 Things to Consider When Choosing a College Major

Now updated with the College Career Success Podcast!

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UPDATE: Video and Audio Podcast below.

Podcast Audio

 

What should I study in college? How should I choose a college major?  While seemingly docile, these questions are wolves in sheep’s clothing!  Having to choose a major at the age of 18 which will become your career for the next several decades of your life can be extremely difficult and stressful.  But never fear, College Career Success is here!!  OK, lame; I know.  Nonetheless, below are 5 tips to consider when choosing your (first, second, or third) college major.

  1. Engagement- will I be engaged, passionate, and fulfilled?

No, we are not talking about engagement to your dream boyfriend or girlfriend!  You are, on the other hand, to be engaged to your future career in college.  Whether you realize it or not, your MAJOR in college becomes your CAREER in life (typically).  You will want to select a major (career) that you will be excited about today, tomorrow, and in 10 years.  Choose something that you are passionate about – something that drives you – something that gives you purpose and fulfillment.  It is common among all of us that when we feel like we are contributing to the betterment of our community and world, we are more fulfilled (happy, satisfied, less stressed, …you get it).

  1. Earning potential – (HINT! The most possible is not always correct for you)

I Could Save HOW MUCH on college?!?

When you graduate, likely you will be left with little to no to negative amounts of money to your name.  But, you have a college degree that can (hopefully) earn you some money!  That is… if your degree carries Earning Potential.  Three basic things to be said about Earning Potential:

  1. Choose a degree that has it!

This may seem obvious, but there are some degrees that have little Earning Potential and/or a narrow window for potential.  Carefully consider your future financial goals after college and use information available about your potential major (career) to determine if its Earning Potential matches your goals.

  1. Consider the Earning Potential at the time of GRADUATION!

In conjunction with the first point, consider also the timing of Earning Potential.  If you desire to be an airline pilot because there is currently (when you enter college) a shortage of pilots and wages are high, be sure to consider the change in the industry from now until graduation (at least 4 years later).  Things like market/industry fluctuation, governmental legislation, new technology, and competition can all change the Earning Potential of a career.  Obviously, you cannot predict the future, so do not get overly anxious about this one.  But, take time to consider the possible positive or negative effects time will have on the Earning Potential of your selected major (career) options.

  1. Some say ‘more money, more problems

If there is one wrong way to look at Earning Potential, it is probably the idea of finding the major (career) that has the absolute HIGHEST Earning Potential.  Your career should be so much more than just money.  Personal satisfaction, fulfillment, and joy found engaging with family members and friends are all things that no amount of money can ever buy.  If you select a major (career) simply based on the HIGHEST Earning Potential, most likely that major (career) will not be a good fit for you.  Most of our grandparents would all tell us that money, in the end, is not what is most valuable in life.  Although you want to be sure that your major (career) will be able to support you financially after graduation, consider joy and satisfaction in life as well.

  1. Time commitment – what will my work life look like?

Time commitment plays a large part of finding a good ‘work/life balance’.  Consider people that are already in your major (career).  Interview or shadow a professional in that field.  How much time are they spending at work or handling issues/tasks from work.  Take a look at your personal goals for your life in the future.  Do you want to have a family with kids or be able to travel a lot?  How much time will you need outside of work?  Ultimately, consider the time requirements of your selected majors (careers) and how that matches your personal life goals.

  1. Flexibility – how much can I change or shift during my career?

7 College Must Do’s

These days, people change jobs…  a lot.  This is a good thing for the employee most of the time.  You can shift to a role or company that better fits you.  You can try new things and learn a lot of different things.  So, how flexible are your potential majors (careers).  Consider if you desire a career that will give you flexibility and then evaluate your selected majors (careers).

  1. Job availability – will there be jobs available when I graduate?

This goes along with the timing of Earning Potential.  The timing of job availability is something very practical to consider.  Currently (when you enter college), there may be a shortage of oil engineers and many jobs are available.  But, when you graduate 4 (or more for some …) years later, will the situation be the same?  Again, you cannot predict the future.  But, consider how many jobs are needed in the country/world.  Consider how many people will be graduating with similar degrees and skills alongside of you.  Do your best to ensure that there will be a job waiting for you when you graduate!

Hopefully, these 5 tips have been useful.  And, if you didn’t get it, let the point be made that your MAJOR becomes your CAREER!  Choose your major carefully as best as you can and may your career be fulfilling and engaging such that the world is a better place thanks to your contribution!

7 Senior Level Study Tips for College Freshmen with BONUS PRO TIP

Meet A Co-Founder – Ben Tincher Edition

Photo Credit: CollegeDegrees360 via Flickr

7 College Must Do’s

This post is all about squeezing the most out of your college years.  Live it up, be productive, get great grades, make friends, share in new experiences, begin your career!  Here at College Career Success we want you to enjoy college and […]

Watch our Podcast for this post:

Or subscribe to our Audio Podcast:
https://www.podbean.com/media/player/pddux-6aaa67?from=site&vjs=1&skin=1&fonts=Helvetica&auto=0&download=0

This post is all about squeezing the most out of your college years.  Live it up, be productive, get great grades, make friends, share in new experiences, begin your career!  Here at College Career Success we want you to enjoy college and be successful during and afterward.

First off, you are in college to get an education.  Be sure to understand that the goal of your time and money during these years is to earn a degree that will give you the skills and knowledge to go on to an exciting and fulfilling career.  Even if that sounds boring today, do your future self a solid and work hard in your classes.  The effort you put into college will most certainly give you a boost early in your career.  But, college is not all about books and tests; you will certainly want to have some fun too.  With that said, let’s look a some things that will help you both enjoy college and kill it in the classroom!

1. Put Yourself Out There

Top 5 Things to Consider When Choosing a College Major

Your freshman year can be very exciting, but college can be also intimidating.  Everything is new and different.  After you get acquainted with your surroundings in the first few weeks, begin to take some deliberate steps to get out there on the proverbial dance floor.  Start small by making a decision to show up to a information meeting about a new club or even simply visiting a new building on campus.  Choose small steps that you can take to continually grow in your confidence as a member of the community.  Before long, you will feel like you have been there for your entire life.  Being confident of yourself within your surroundings will help your social life flourish as well as your grades.

2. Go To Tutoring

Most colleges have free tutoring available for a lot of freshman courses and yet often not many students use this resource.  You can either spend two days trying to figure out a chemistry problem on your own, or you can go to tutoring and learn it in 30 minutes.  Tutoring is a HUGE help and can save you a ton of studying time.  Plus, you will truly learn the material better.  Use the resources available to you to get the most out of your study time and be better prepared for you classes.

3. Join A Club

Clubs in college are a great way to try different things and meet new people.  There are often all different types of clubs from scuba diving to basket weaving or even underwater basket weaving.  Often times, if you stay in a club for a long time, some of your best friends in college can come through these groups.  Join a club or several and get connected while doing things you love!

4. Talk To Your TAs and Professors

Most professors truly want to help their students learn.  Talking to your professor after class or during office hours is again an often under used resource.  Professors and Teaching Assistants (TAs) can help you out when you are stuck on assignments or point you in the right direction if you are lost.  Professors are often willing to help with homework, assignments, and have been known to give hints on upcoming tests!  Also, your professor is a great resource to connecting with the professional world outside of the University.  Ask them about internships and recommendations for work!

5. Try Something New

Similar to joining a club, there are always opportunities on a college campus to try something new even if for just a few hours.  Check out the events listings on campus.  Looks for signs and posters.  Go to a salsa dancing night or a try your hand at painting.  Gather some of your friends to gain some new experiences.  Who knows, you may just be the next Picasso!

6. Study With A Friend Or Group

7 Senior Level Study Tips for College Freshmen with BONUS PRO TIP

Let’s face it; studying can be boring and tedious sometimes.  Liven up your study time by studying with a friend or a small group from class.  Studying with other people can be extremely helpful.  You can compare notes to be sure that you didn’t miss anything.  You can discuss the course material to get a different viewpoint or understanding of the material.  And, you can help each other stay on task.  Plus, it is just more fun to have a friend.  This is especially helpful when studying for a test or completing a difficult homework set.  WARNING!  As great as it is to study with others, be very careful about who you choose to study with.  You will want a study partner that is serious about the course and willing to bring their own input to the session.  Don’t study with someone who just wants you to put in the work for them!  Ultimately, a good study partner can be an invaluable help, but choose wisely.

7. Take A Weird (Awesome) Class

Lastly, along the lines of new experiences, did you know there are whole classes devoted to new and/or awesome things?  There are climbing classes, music theory and volleyball classes, meditation and astronomy classes.  Find an awesome class and be awesome for a few hours a week.

Top 7 Mistakes to Avoid when Trying to Choose a College

The Yerkes-Dodson Law – Huh? Don’t Stress About It… Or Do!

Top 5 Things to Consider When Choosing a College Major

What should I study in college? How should I choose a college major?  While seemingly docile, these questions are wolves in sheep’s clothing!  Having to choose a major at the age of 18 which will become your career for the next several decades of your life can be extremely difficult and stressful.  But never fear, College Career Success is here!!  OK, lame; I know.  Nonetheless, below are 5 tips to consider when choosing your (first, second, or third) college major.

  1. Engagement- will I be engaged, passionate, and fulfilled?

No, we are not talking about engagement to your dream boyfriend or girlfriend!  You are, on the other hand, to be engaged to your future career in college.  Whether you realize it or not, your MAJOR in college becomes your CAREER in life (typically).  You will want to select a major (career) that you will be excited about today, tomorrow, and in 10 years.  Choose something that you are passionate about – something that drives you – something that gives you purpose and fulfillment.  It is common among all of us that when we feel like we are contributing to the betterment of our community and world, we are more fulfilled (happy, satisfied, less stressed, …you get it).

  1. Earning potential – (HINT! The most possible is not always correct for you)

I Could Save HOW MUCH on college?!?

When you graduate, likely you will be left with little to no to negative amounts of money to your name.  But, you have a college degree that can (hopefully) earn you some money!  That is… if your degree carries Earning Potential.  Three basic things to be said about Earning Potential:

  1. Choose a degree that has it!

This may seem obvious, but there are some degrees that have little Earning Potential and/or a narrow window for potential.  Carefully consider your future financial goals after college and use information available about your potential major (career) to determine if its Earning Potential matches your goals.

  1. Consider the Earning Potential at the time of GRADUATION!

In conjunction with the first point, consider also the timing of Earning Potential.  If you desire to be an airline pilot because there is currently (when you enter college) a shortage of pilots and wages are high, be sure to consider the change in the industry from now until graduation (at least 4 years later).  Things like market/industry fluctuation, governmental legislation, new technology, and competition can all change the Earning Potential of a career.  Obviously, you cannot predict the future, so do not get overly anxious about this one.  But, take time to consider the possible positive or negative effects time will have on the Earning Potential of your selected major (career) options.

  1. Some say ‘more money, more problems

If there is one wrong way to look at Earning Potential, it is probably the idea of finding the major (career) that has the absolute HIGHEST Earning Potential.  Your career should be so much more than just money.  Personal satisfaction, fulfillment, and joy found engaging with family members and friends are all things that no amount of money can ever buy.  If you select a major (career) simply based on the HIGHEST Earning Potential, most likely that major (career) will not be a good fit for you.  Most of our grandparents would all tell us that money, in the end, is not what is most valuable in life.  Although you want to be sure that your major (career) will be able to support you financially after graduation, consider joy and satisfaction in life as well.

  1. Time commitment – what will my work life look like?

Time commitment plays a large part of finding a good ‘work/life balance’.  Consider people that are already in your major (career).  Interview or shadow a professional in that field.  How much time are they spending at work or handling issues/tasks from work.  Take a look at your personal goals for your life in the future.  Do you want to have a family with kids or be able to travel a lot?  How much time will you need outside of work?  Ultimately, consider the time requirements of your selected majors (careers) and how that matches your personal life goals.

  1. Flexibility – how much can I change or shift during my career?

7 College Must Do’s

These days, people change jobs…  a lot.  This is a good thing for the employee most of the time.  You can shift to a role or company that better fits you.  You can try new things and learn a lot of different things.  So, how flexible are your potential majors (careers).  Consider if you desire a career that will give you flexibility and then evaluate your selected majors (careers).

  1. Job availability – will there be jobs available when I graduate?

This goes along with the timing of Earning Potential.  The timing of job availability is something very practical to consider.  Currently (when you enter college), there may be a shortage of oil engineers and many jobs are available.  But, when you graduate 4 (or more for some …) years later, will the situation be the same?  Again, you cannot predict the future.  But, consider how many jobs are needed in the country/world.  Consider how many people will be graduating with similar degrees and skills alongside of you.  Do your best to ensure that there will be a job waiting for you when you graduate!

Hopefully, these 5 tips have been useful.  And, if you didn’t get it, let the point be made that your MAJOR becomes your CAREER!  Choose your major carefully as best as you can and may your career be fulfilling and engaging such that the world is a better place thanks to your contribution!

7 Senior Level Study Tips for College Freshmen with BONUS PRO TIP

Meet A Co-Founder – Ben Tincher Edition

Photo Credit: CollegeDegrees360 via Flickr

7 College Must Do’s

Watch our Podcast for this post:

Or subscribe to our Audio Podcast:
https://www.podbean.com/media/player/pddux-6aaa67?from=site&vjs=1&skin=1&fonts=Helvetica&auto=0&download=0

This post is all about squeezing the most out of your college years.  Live it up, be productive, get great grades, make friends, share in new experiences, begin your career!  Here at College Career Success we want you to enjoy college and be successful during and afterward.

First off, you are in college to get an education.  Be sure to understand that the goal of your time and money during these years is to earn a degree that will give you the skills and knowledge to go on to an exciting and fulfilling career.  Even if that sounds boring today, do your future self a solid and work hard in your classes.  The effort you put into college will most certainly give you a boost early in your career.  But, college is not all about books and tests; you will certainly want to have some fun too.  With that said, let’s look a some things that will help you both enjoy college and kill it in the classroom!

1. Put Yourself Out There

Top 5 Things to Consider When Choosing a College Major

Your freshman year can be very exciting, but college can be also intimidating.  Everything is new and different.  After you get acquainted with your surroundings in the first few weeks, begin to take some deliberate steps to get out there on the proverbial dance floor.  Start small by making a decision to show up to a information meeting about a new club or even simply visiting a new building on campus.  Choose small steps that you can take to continually grow in your confidence as a member of the community.  Before long, you will feel like you have been there for your entire life.  Being confident of yourself within your surroundings will help your social life flourish as well as your grades.

2. Go To Tutoring

Most colleges have free tutoring available for a lot of freshman courses and yet often not many students use this resource.  You can either spend two days trying to figure out a chemistry problem on your own, or you can go to tutoring and learn it in 30 minutes.  Tutoring is a HUGE help and can save you a ton of studying time.  Plus, you will truly learn the material better.  Use the resources available to you to get the most out of your study time and be better prepared for you classes.

3. Join A Club

Clubs in college are a great way to try different things and meet new people.  There are often all different types of clubs from scuba diving to basket weaving or even underwater basket weaving.  Often times, if you stay in a club for a long time, some of your best friends in college can come through these groups.  Join a club or several and get connected while doing things you love!

4. Talk To Your TAs and Professors

Most professors truly want to help their students learn.  Talking to your professor after class or during office hours is again an often under used resource.  Professors and Teaching Assistants (TAs) can help you out when you are stuck on assignments or point you in the right direction if you are lost.  Professors are often willing to help with homework, assignments, and have been known to give hints on upcoming tests!  Also, your professor is a great resource to connecting with the professional world outside of the University.  Ask them about internships and recommendations for work!

5. Try Something New

Similar to joining a club, there are always opportunities on a college campus to try something new even if for just a few hours.  Check out the events listings on campus.  Looks for signs and posters.  Go to a salsa dancing night or a try your hand at painting.  Gather some of your friends to gain some new experiences.  Who knows, you may just be the next Picasso!

6. Study With A Friend Or Group

7 Senior Level Study Tips for College Freshmen with BONUS PRO TIP

Let’s face it; studying can be boring and tedious sometimes.  Liven up your study time by studying with a friend or a small group from class.  Studying with other people can be extremely helpful.  You can compare notes to be sure that you didn’t miss anything.  You can discuss the course material to get a different viewpoint or understanding of the material.  And, you can help each other stay on task.  Plus, it is just more fun to have a friend.  This is especially helpful when studying for a test or completing a difficult homework set.  WARNING!  As great as it is to study with others, be very careful about who you choose to study with.  You will want a study partner that is serious about the course and willing to bring their own input to the session.  Don’t study with someone who just wants you to put in the work for them!  Ultimately, a good study partner can be an invaluable help, but choose wisely.

7. Take A Weird (Awesome) Class

Lastly, along the lines of new experiences, did you know there are whole classes devoted to new and/or awesome things?  There are climbing classes, music theory and volleyball classes, meditation and astronomy classes.  Find an awesome class and be awesome for a few hours a week.

Top 7 Mistakes to Avoid when Trying to Choose a College

The Yerkes-Dodson Law – Huh? Don’t Stress About It… Or Do!