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The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

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Want your voice to be heard? Submit a letter to the editor, send us an op-ed pitch or check out our open positions for the chance to be published by the Daily Utah Chronicle.
@TheChrony

Grasping the reality of choosing a major

By Melissa Schack

Not long ago, I decided I needed to do something about choosing a major — not just a subject to study and graduate in, but also one that would lead me to a career. I determined the best way to do this was through process of elimination — going through each major and considering each career that area would lead to. I refuse to have a degree I won’t use.

A fair number of people graduate from college but don’t go into a career related to their degree. It’s maddening to think of spending so much time and money to have only a piece of paper, as opposed to having a direction to point yourself in.

College is supposed to prepare you for a career and for life, but with most of the facts and figures forgotten, some might as well have gone straight to the career. This is why it’s so important to choose the right major so it can be applied. It seems to me that when getting out of high school, students have learned to just choose a major, even if they aren’t sure the major will take them where they want to be in life.

The process of choosing a major came to me when enrolled in a class called multicultural education, which requires students to volunteer as a student teacher for 20 hours during the semester. Essentially, the class showed us what a job within the major would be like. It helped me understand how much I couldn’t stand the barriers put on learning in public schools.

One major choice down, and two to go.

Reading the online descriptions of classes the U offers can also help you choose a major that fits your career goals.

In searching the descriptions, I came across a class that explores the professions of one of my majors of interest. More classes should be designed to teach students like this and should be a prerequisite to each major in order to show students exactly where that area of study will lead them. Of course, changing majors is always possible, but it can be very time-consuming and wasteful.

When a student is interested in a subject, it’s usually because the professor is good or the curriculum is interesting. However, an interesting class or professor doesn’t usually outline how jobs relating to a student’s major are in the real world.

To find a profession where your passions lie, you have to break down the walls of the classroom and get out to the real world.

Some classes don’t have such requirements, but there are jobs, internships, volunteer work or personal interviewing opportunities that can really save a lot of time in school.

If I had discovered this six years ago when I first got out of high school, maybe I would have graduated by now.

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