Tips for choosing majors at college

By Morgan Miller
September 18, 2008

Shannon Keough

Students walk onto Cabrini’s campus at the start of fall semester with things on their mind; after all, college is a major milestone in everyone’s life. It seems hardly likely that the typical student would rather worry about their major as opposed to what to wear the first day of classes.

Well, worry and stress no more! Even if you have not declared a major, or you are wondering if your major fits you best, remember you are definitely not alone.

Kimberly Prigge, junior exercise science and heath promotion major, has stayed with her declared major all throughout college but changed her career choice. Prigge originally started at Cabrini with the hopes of becoming a physical therapist.

After participating in courses relating to her major, Prigge said, “After seeing and learning about all the different things I can do, I’m not exactly sure what I want to do. There are many options and I’m trying to find the one that fits me perfectly.”

Sometimes a student may find out that their major is not correct for their personality, such as Duania Barnes, senior social work major, discovered. At the start of her freshman year, Barnes was a nursing major. However, after that first year she decided to give social work a try.

Barnes said, “I did not have a passion for what I was learning. I was going to class and just going through the motions. I felt that I wasn’t getting anything from it.” Now, just months away from graduation, Barnes is beyond satisfied with her choice to switch and is performing successfully in the classroom.

Dr. Jerry Zurek, head of the communication department, said that students who switch their majors, or declare it later than most, will have to put extra effort into her classes to catch up to students who have always had that major. However, he said they must never forget that it can be done.

Zurek spoke of a current Cabrini senior who transferred to the college as a junior. At the student’s previous college, her major was entirely different from communication. Nonetheless, the student put 100 percent effort into their classes and school work, causing her to be one of the best students in the major.

Barnes and Prigge both said that students should not wait to take their major courses. If you take a few courses in relation to your major in your freshman or even sophomore year and decide it is not for you, it is not too late to change.

Cabrini’s communication department is one of the most varied majors at the college. Classes range from radio to journalism to video and more. This range allows students to achieve a variety of skills and decide which aspect they would like to focus on.

Zurek said, “[We give students] a realistic, real life experience on campus to give them a sense of what people do after they graduate.” He said hands-on experience is a mark of that major here.

Dr. David Dunbar, associate professor of biology, greatly emphasized the “bright future” science holds. “With global warming and a new emphasis on going green, companies are going to be looking for individuals that have expertise,” Dunbar said about the science branch ecology.

Dunbar and Prigge both encourage students to switch majors if it is not what truly interests them. Prigge said, “My biggest piece of advice for people who are undecided or are thinking about switching is to find what interests them most. You will know it when you find what you are most passionate about, but until then try a variety of classes just to see what you really enjoy and look forward to attending.”

Dunbar emphasizes listening to that gut instinct while pursuing what truly interests you. “Hey, if the student is staying at Cabrini, what

difference does it make whether they stay in the science department or go to

another department? The main thing is for a student to do what he or she is

passionate about.”

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Morgan Miller

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