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Myth: Everyone has a major but me.
Fact: 10-13% of incoming HSU students begin as Undeclared (source). National studies have shown anywhere from 20-50% of students enter college “undecided”. Additionally, studies have shown that up to 75% of students end up changing their major before they graduate (source).
Myth: I should know what I want to major already.
Fact: Students who decide on their major after they have been in college have shown to be more likely to graduate than students who settle on the major they picked before starting. So, acknowledging you have more exploring to do is a good indicator that you know yourself and are looking for an academic path that you have a passion for. (source 1, source 2)
Myth: I should be figuring out what I want to do before I go to college because it is expensive.
Fact: While attending college can be expensive, often it is a great place for you to gain the experiences and support you need to identify what it is you would like to do. Whether it be the opportunity to try and experience new things that you have never had access to before, or you find mentors through other students, staff, and faculty that support you in directions you were already curious about, college can be the place you need to identify what will make you fulfilled. Additionally, the Education Advisory Board(EAB) has reported that students who change their major after arriving to college (like going from undeclared to a declared major) are actually more likely to graduate from college than students who come in declared (source).Taking a little bit of time to make an informed decision is better then forcing an uninformed decision.
Myth: Picking my major is basically the same as selecting a career.
Fact: Majors and careers are not the same. There are many connections to possible careers, but they are not the same. That being said some degrees like engineering, accounting, social work, etc. do lead to careers with the same name. A primary focus of a liberal arts university education is to be a responsible and understanding citizen by building a broad skill base that employers in all fields look for. When you combine the skills you learned growing up, while in college, from working, and other activities, you create a unique skill set that allows you to be successful in multiple jobs and careers.
Myth: My entire career will be determined by the major I choose.
Fact: Many people who work change jobs and careers fields. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has estimated that people born between 1946-1964 (Baby boomers) changed their job 11 times. Earning your bachelor’s degree will open up more options for you than you might have without a degree. Focusing on understanding yourself and the opportunities available will help you make informed decisions and focus your time and resource towards things that bring you fulfillment.