How to pick a major

December 10th, 2012

So long high school! After countless pep rallies, homecomings, track meets, debates, field trips, assemblies, and a prom, you are now ready to become the proud owner of a shiny new diploma and apply for college. But how on earth will you choose a major? After all this is THE most important decision of your life. Your entire future rests on this one choice. And once a decision is made, it can’t be unmade…right? Wrong.

Undeclared. Let’s take the pressure off! Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to know what you want to do with the rest of your life by your eighteenth birthday. Many students enter college with an undeclared major. If you have a variety of interests or if you lack direction completely, this is the major for you. All first and second year students are required to take classes across multiple subjects. This is going to help a lot! Once you find a topic that is especially interesting to you start taking more classes in that subject. Before you know it you will have a major (or two) emerging.

Declared. You might already have an idea of what you want to study. Maybe you are passionate about cooking, or science, or Spanish. In that case, jump into those classes with both feet! On the other hand, you might pick something because you have a vague interest in it or because you think you can get a stable career in that field. You might end up loving it or you might hate it. Not to worry if it’s not the right path for you. Many students change their major a couple of times before graduation. Not only that, but several majors have overlapping course requirements. That means that multiple classes can be taken that help narrow down options without having to spend excess time (or money) in college.

Employment. After graduation there’s no guarantee that you will actually work in the same field that you received your degree in. But a college degree says more about you than “student is proficient in math”. It shows that you are responsible, capable, teachable, and intelligent. Simply having a degree, no matter what the major, will give you a marked advantage when it comes to getting a job. The 3 most important things to remember as you enter the college years are study hard, play hard, and change the world. Good luck grad!

Leaving the Bubble of Home

December 5th, 2012

Moving Day

      One of the biggest decisions senior’s face in the waning stages of High School, is the decision of where to go to college.  Some kids have dream schools, schools they have had their heart set sense the moment the concept of college was introduced.   However, most kids do not really know what school they really want to go.  We make lists of what schools have fun and eventful sports programs, offer the major we think we want to achieve, and look at where our friends are applying.  The best advice I can give to a soon-to-be and undecided college students is to think outside the “box.”  Take advantage of these 4-5 years of college and go someplace new.  Look at schools in places you never though you would ever go.  Life outside your hometown is different.  There are many many new and different experiences that you will never experience at home.  Some you may hate, and others you may love.

I went to school to a far far away place in Northern California at Davis.  Even though Davis is in California, anyone who has been knows that Northern California is not the same as Southern California.   Looking back I am very great full to have logged a few years up there.  I love LA, and Davis is far from the coastal cities I grew up in.  But I learned a lot from time I spent there.  Many of the things I did for fun were things I never heard of back home.  The people and food were new and different too.

So, leave home for college.  Go see and live in a place totally new from what you have known growing up.  When thinking of potential colleges, look at a map.  Look at places you have never been but want to go to.  There is a whole lot to be learned while in college outside of the classroom.