Students shouldn’t be afraid to change majors

Though it can be daunting, changing your major can lead you closer to future you want



Although some students may come to WSU with an idea of their dream job, it is normal for them to change their minds. Students should consider every option, and not have to worry about changing their major.

MEGHAN HENRY, Evergreen managing editor

College is a common next step for many American students. Many of us come into college unsure of what our options are. Often, we don’t yet know what we want to be when we grow up.

Many of us choose a general business track or a major focused on what we have always been good at. Perhaps creative writing or physics.

It is not often students know exactly what they want to do in four years when they sign up for their first classes.

Interests inevitably change throughout our university experience. We discover some new passion, or we realize that we might not be as good at one subject as we initially thought.

When this happens, we need to be confident in this realization. We should not be afraid to change our major.

Many students across all study tracks at WSU have found themselves in this situation. Some realize their desire to switch it up junior year. Others realize earlier on.

Bella Sumner, senior biology major, said that her previous major, biochemistry, isn’t much different, but it would have prepared her for a different future career than she wanted.

“I came into college thinking that biochem was just a good mix of biology and chemistry and that it would be a good prep for any health field,” Sumner said.

After taking a semester or two of classes, many students find that they want to focus on a different career path. Luckily, Sumner was able to make that change.

“I realized it was a little more specific and would be more geared toward working in a lab, and I eventually want to be a nurse practitioner,” Sumner said. “Then I changed to biology, and I am on a basic medical sciences track.”

The most intimidating aspect of picking classes can often be the end result. When we look at our courses as a stepping stone toward what we might want to do in the future, this can be really helpful.

And then we won’t waste time taking classes we don’t need.

“Now I don’t have to take some of the classes that just wouldn’t have been needed or fun for me,” Sumner said. “Now I can fit in the prerequisites that I need for nursing school.”

Madelyn Quigley, senior nursing major, had a similar experience. When she first came to WSU, she was majoring in microbiology and on the pre-med track.

For Quigley, it took her own experience at a doctor’s appointment to clarify her career goals.

“I went to a doctor’s appointment and just realized how much more the nurse gets to talk to the patient than the doctor does,” she said.

When we take a personal moment as an opportunity for self-reflection on what we really want to spend our time doing in our careers and in school, taking a leap and changing a major is sometimes the best choice.

“Ultimately, too, there’s other things that I want to do in life than go to school for that long,” Quigley said. “That’s the main reason I decided to switch.”

Particularly for pre-med and pre-law majors or those who want to pursue a master’s degree, this daunting length of time at school can be a major factor in choosing one’s study track.

People are rarely sure of their career goals. Even if they are when they enter college, it is okay to have a change of heart.

When asked what she would tell someone who was considering changing their major, Quigley encouraged trusting your own intuition.

“I would probably say, “go with your gut,'” she said. “At the end of the day you know what’s best for yourself and if you’re making the choice for the right reasons, then you can’t go wrong.”

The pressure of classes should not outweigh the excitement you feel about your major or your future career. We should not be afraid to change our major to match our passion and career goals.

Even if it means another semester or two in school, every student should have the opportunity to change their mind and their dream job. And none of us should be afraid to do it.