Unpopular opinion: It's okay to change your major.
And, if you're like me, you might need to change it more than once.
I remember entering college in 2018 knowing with absolute certainty that my major, Elementary Education, was perfect for me. Then, I had a sudden change of heart. Here's how it went.
I never, ever thought that I would change my major to anything unrelated to education. Ever since I was in elementary school myself, I knew that teaching was right for me. My fourth and fifth grade teacher, especially, grew my inspiration for teaching tenfold. (Thanks, Marci!)
However, I was in college and realized I never allowed myself to explore other options. I had, and still have, many interests in life. I love traveling, creating art, making music, operating social media and marketing platforms, and I have a huge interest in all things related to criminal justice and psychology. My original plan, to major in education and minor in fine arts was starting to become a tiresome thought for me while completing general education prerequisites my first year of college.
I felt as though I wasn't learning anything, and as a person who LOVES to learn about new things, I began to doubt the plans I had my entire life. So, I decided to explore my options and ended up changing my major to Criminology and Criminal Justice with a minor in psychology. Big switch, I know. And even though I would change my major yet again, this was the best decision I could have made at the time. I was going through many things in my personal life at the time; navigating a double full-time schedule, packing to move back home with my parents, experiencing my first relationship in awhile, and unresolved differences with long-term friends. And that's just to name a few.
So, I began my sophomore year as a new criminology major, eager to learn as much as I could about my new future career field. And let me tell you, I absolutely loved it. Again, I was convinced I was where I needed to be. Family and friends were supportive in my new decision to pursue a career in criminal justice. Over the next year I went on a police ride-a-long, learned about terrorism and sex offenders, and studied over 40 theories of crime and deviance. I applied for a police cadet program at school, got an interview, and then ultimately was not selected to take part in the program.
I was heartbroken. I thought that this was my path; that becoming a police officer was my new calling. A feeling began to weigh on my heart before I even applied to the program that I was missing the idea of becoming a teacher. It slowly grew until one day, I cracked. A lot of thinking, re-evaluating my goals, and LOTS of praying finally lead me back to the education route.
So, here I am. I'm a year behind my degree for the Elementary Education program, but I'm happier now than I have been for the past two years of my education. I'm so thankful that I took the opportunity to explore other options because it not only reassured me that education was ultimately where I needed to end up, it also showed me how thankful I am for the opportunities I have been given so far in my educational career.
- I started college as an Elementary Education major with a concentration in Language Arts and a minor in Fine Arts.
- I became a Criminology and Criminal Justice major with a minor in Psychology.
- And I will graduate with a Bachelor's of Science in Elementary Education with a concentration in Mathematics and a minor in criminal justice.
My journey so far hasn't been perfect, but it's exactly what I needed for it to be. If you are questioning your major, start exploring other options. You might find your way back like I did, or you might realize you've fallen in love with a different career. Whatever it is, make sure it's something you enjoy in the end. Because life is too short to waste time being unhappy.