Students are encouraged to get involved on campus as soon as they arrive, whether by joining student organizations, seeking a new family through Greek life or joining an intramural sports team. Even more critical aspects college students explore are attending the right school and choosing the right career paths.
Choosing a major is a significant moment in any student’s college career. Sometimes we don’t get it right the first time, but that’s OK. It’s important for students to research, try out different courses and become familiar with departments on campus because making the decision to change your major or transfer schools could be one of the best decisions you make in college.
The selection process can be simple for some students. Sophomore medical laboratory science major Diana Gott said, “An important factor when choosing a major or deciding to switch your major is interest. I’ve always known I wanted to work in the science field, even as a little kid.”
It’s not always that simple. Some students were in high school a short time ago, so the nature of the decisions they previously made, including planning prom night and senior pranks, does not compare to the more consequential decisions of mapping out their entire future.
As scary as it seems, students should set aside feelings of fear and doubt by taking a leap of faith. The bright side of college is nothing is set in stone. College encourages students to step outside of their comfort zones.
According to the APSU Office of Admissions, the university receives most of its transfer students from Nashville State, Hopkinsville Community College and Volunteer State. A total of 640 students transferred to APSU this semester, with 232 arriving from in-state community colleges.
Junior media technology major Hayden Drury started his college career at Middle Tennessee State University as a philosophy major before transferring to APSU.
“Whether it’s cost effectiveness, or whether or not you can get into a better program, transferring schools can be beneficial,” Drury said. “For me, it was the location. I knew I would receive a better education in a place I was familiar with, versus being in a place I didn’t know very well.” Every student’s experience in college is going to be different, but one mindset all students should share is they are attending the right school.
Some students feel obligated to follow paths paved by their parents, however college helps them create their own. Freshman mechatronics major Quinton King said “I’ve considered switching my major to psychology because my mom’s a psychologist, but I’ve always had a passion for fixing things, and messing with gadgets and electronics.”
That is what college is all about, finding yourself and your purpose. When asked if he had any advice for students who are undecided or considering changing majors, King said, “Do what makes you happy.”
The process of switching majors or transferring schools is not as scary as it seems. The clock does not run out of time. College promotes trial and error. Whether you’ve known your path your entire life, or you’re still figuring it all out, there isn’t a deadline. You can always work toward your future at your own pace, even if that means switching your learning environment or changing your career path – your future self just might thank you.