Educate Yourself on the Realities of Choosing a Major

TME gets you connected with the resources and tools to help you explore majors, but these tools might be ineffective if you're not READY to explore. This is why it's important to get yourself in the right mindset before you begin your exploration process. The best way to do this is to address myths/misconceptions and educate yourself on what choosing a major really is...and isn't.

To do this, you must shift your mindset. You must break down everything you've been conditioned to know about majors and careers. You must separate fact from myth. All of the information is there...you just need to know where to look!

Below, we've provided links to a handful of sources that will allow you to educate yourself on the realities of choosing a major. If you have any questions, concerns, or just want to chat after looking through this information, feel free to make an appointment with an Exploratory Expert.

MAJORS and how they connect with CAREERS

Many students assume that they need to choose a major that aligns with a career or that certain majors won't lead to good careers. We've provided some sources below that prove otherwise.

 

  • The top 10 most versatile majors are VERY diverse
    • The source below identifies the top 10 majors that led to the most varied types of opportunities for 2017 college graduates. Within this list, you'll find majors that fall under business, social/behavioral sciences, humanities, and STEM.
    • Primary Source - Click Here

 

 

  • On average, college graduates change jobs 4 times by the age of 32
    • Not only are they changing jobs, but often changing career fields altogether! Even if you choose a major based on a specific career, there's a good chance you might change your mind within 10 years after graduating.

 

  • Employers value strong transferable skills and experience most when hiring college graduates.
    • If you're concerned with getting a job after college, it's important to know what's most important to employers when hiring college graduates. Hint...it's not choice of major.

 

  • According to a report by Dell Communications, 85% of the jobs that will exist in the year 2030 have not even been invented yet. 
    • There's a strong possibility that the job(s) you end up pursuing after college might not even exist yet! In that case, it's best to choose a major that you actually want to study and will provide you with a wide range of transferable skills.

MAJORS and how they connect with GRADUATE SCHOOL

Many students think that their choice of major will limit their options for graduate school. In most cases, this is not true. Take a look at a few examples below.

 

  • Humanities, Math, and Statistics majors have the highest acceptance rates for medical school.
    • Most students assume that biology is the best undergraduate major for pre-med students. However, humanities, math, and statistics majors actually have the highest med school acceptance rates AND outperform biology majors on every level of the MCAT.
    • Straight from Harvard Medical School's Admissions website:
      • "No preference is given to applicants who have majored in science over those who have majored in other disciplines. Students can be successful in their medical studies regardless of undergraduate concentration, providing they have had adequate science preparation. Students are urged to strive not for specialized training but for a balanced, liberal education."
      • Primary Source - Click Here

 

  • Only 27% of the students admitted into UPenn's MBA program (top in the Country) actually majored in business during their undergraduate careers.

 

 

Is it best to DECLARE a major as soon as possible?

Many students feel that the sooner they declare a major, the better. This is why many choose to enter college with a declared major, even when they're not sure about their choice. It's important to note that the majority of college students change majors at least once and that students who take the time to explore have higher graduation rates than those who don't (see below).

 

  • 75-85% of students are estimated to change majors at least once during their college careers.
  • Students who declare their final majors between semesters 3-5 have higher graduation rates than students who enter college with a major and never change.