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Akers: Switching it up, why changing your major may not be such a bad thing

Clemson // Courtesy
This week’s speak-up took place on Library Bridge, where The Tiger asked students if they had ever switched their major.

There’s nothing worse than growing up with a dream career in mind, only to start college and then realize that you absolutely hate it.

Sometimes, though, you might just realize that a certain major just isn’t for you. Personally, this was my experience in college. I came to Clemson as an animal and veterinary science major and quickly found myself wanting to change majors after only a few months of classes.

In fact, you might be surprised to find out that this is actually a common experience for many college students.

“About one-third of students enrolled in bachelor’s degree programs changed majors,” according to a study by the National Center for Education Statistics. Not only is it highly likely for a student to change their major after starting college, but they may also change it multiple times. “About 1 in 10 students changed majors more than once,” according to the same study. However, even with it being really common, there still seems to be some sort of stigma surrounding changing majors in college.

I remember when I was considering switching majors my freshman year and looked to peers for advice. Many told me it wasn’t a good idea or that I would regret my decision, especially since I wanted to switch from a STEM-focused major to communication.

I received so much praise from anyone who found out I was pursuing a degree in veterinary science. However, when I began the process of switching, the feedback I received was very negative. However, looking back on that time, I am extremely grateful I trusted my gut instead of letting others pressure me into going into a career and pursuing a major that I wasn’t happy doing.

“Nearly 2 in 5 American college graduates have major regrets,” according to an article by The Washington Post. “That is, they regret their major.”

College is a time to experiment and figure out what you want to do in the future. It’s a time to try out new things, take on opportunities and discover what you want to do with your career.
If you’re someone who is considering switching majors or is in the process of doing so, just remember to trust your gut. You know yourself better than anyone, and it’s important not to let others influence what you choose to do with your career.

Switching majors is one of the best decisions I ever made in college, and I have a feeling that you might find yourself feeling the same way. Remember to talk to your adviser and explore your options if you’re considering changing majors.

A great resource can be found through Clemson Navigate, where you can schedule an appointment and request to meet with an adviser outside of your major. All you have to do is select “academic advising” as your appointment type and then select any major under “major exploration” for service.

Utilize these resources and remember that majors aren’t permanent, and you should switch it up if you need to.

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Madison Akers
Madison Akers, Asst. Opinion Editor
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